The recycled flowers had an outing last weekend in support of a new green initiative based in and around Kings Langley. The Grand Union Community Energy, GUCE – pronounced juice, of course!
The GUCE – Launch Event took place on Saturday the 8th of June in Charter Court, Kings Langley.
This great new project and first project of the group will install nearly two hundred solar panels on the The Steiner School roof in Kings Langley. These panels will provide around 25% of the main school building’s electricity bill and guarantee a price of 6p per unit for the school over the next 20 years. The school doesn’t have to invest and the project is instead funded by community investment. The way the project has been set up enables the wider community to benefit from this investment opportunity, not just the school and not just GUCE. Any investors are taking a stake in the project and will get something back over the next twenty years. This Project really is open to all and not weighted in favour of the individual private investor. Grants are available for people to finance their investment into the community pot and fund their share in the project. Therefore people who cannot afford to install solar on their own roofs have the opportunity to own a little bit of a larger community project. This project is open to all irrelevant of any previous involvement with the school, GUCE or Kings Langley.
The vision of GUCE is to develop a portfolio of community owned renewable energy projects in and around the Grand Union Canal. Other planned projects involve exploring hydro energy and installing solar panels on three other schools. The organisation maintains the overriding intention of bridging the gap between different communities via involvement in renewable energy projects.
GUCE is essentially a co-operative but officially constituted as an Industrial Provident Society, existing for the benefit of the community. This translates to, that although a dividend paying co-operative, the priority is to pay back to the community, allowing enough return to keep investors happy. Facts and figures are available on the website. http://guceltd.org
I met with Annie Heaton, an experienced renewable energy developer, driving force and community minded individual. Annie explained how the idea for the project came into being at a RES volunteer day. There are six board members directing the project made up of members of RES and transition in Kings, each with a wealth of expertise and enthusiasm to bring to the project. Similar projects are currently up and running in other areas of the country but this is the first of its kind in the area adapting other working models to exist for community benefit.
The share offer is now open. To find out more about this excellent and unusual community spirited investment opportunity please get in touch…..
Or phone Annie Heaton on – 07443 224068