Share offer opens as energy scheme eyes Steiner solar project

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A green scheme which aims to turn renewable energy into a tempting moneyspinner gets off the ground this weekend.

Grand Union Community Energy has been set up to develop projects along the canal corridor, and has already sealed its first high-profile scheme in Kings Langley.

This summer will see the installation of the first community-owned ‘solar array’ – the name given to a collection of solar panels – in South West Herts on the Rudolf Steiner School campus in Langley Hill.

The scheme will be funded by local investment, with those who buy shares expected to get a rate of return well above current savings accounts.

Anyone who wants to know more can go to a public meeting hosted by GUCE at 10am on Saturday morning at Charter Court in Vicarage Road, just off Kings Langley High Street.

Representatives will also be running a stall at the Abbots Langley Carnival on Saturday, and the Kings Langley Carnival on Saturday, June 22.

GUCE will be opening its first share offer to finance the 46kWp Steiner array this weekend.

Investors will be able to invest between £250 and £20,000 with a three per cent annual return, which doubles for UK taxpayers due to a 50 per cent government tax rebate scheme for new enterprises.

Annie Heaton of GUCE, which has been set up by the Transition In Kings organisation which promotes homegrown environmental sustainability for the benefit of the community, said: “Even if you can’t afford solar panels on your own roof, for as little as £250 you can own a part of this community solar project and see a good return on your investment.”

If you are interested in investing, you can find all the information online at www.guceltd.org, or look for guceltd on Facebook.

Annie said: “We anticipate the share offer will be oversubscribed, so visit our website as soon as possible.” The share offer closes on June 25.

GUCE – pronounced ‘juice’ – is an Industrial and Provident Society (IPS), part of a growing movement in which finance is raised for community projects from the community itself. Organisers say renewable energy projects are particularly suited to this approach as the government feed-in tariffs provide security of income.

You can find out more about Transition In Kings online at www.transitioninkings.org