Solar Panels

About Us

South Somerset Community Energy (SSCES) is a not-for-profit Community Benefit Society, whose aims are to reduce carbon emissions and fuel bills, especially for those in fuel poverty, throughout South Somerset. Energy spend and fuel poverty are serious issues for many in South Somerset and the Board is determined to do something substantial towards helping.

The Society is owned by its Members (investors) and is governed by a Set of Rules approved by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). A key point is that any surplus the Society generates has to be put towards other community energy and fuel poverty projects across the district of South Somerset.

We will fund and manage renewable energy installations in the district of South Somerset, starting with installing solar PV systems on schools, community buildings, businesses and private homes. Our second tranche of projects are in Yeovil, Stoke-sub-Hamdon and Chard - see our Projects page. South Somerset Community Energy provides these installations and energy monitoring display packages free of charge to each host building. A long term (20-year) roof lease is agreed with the building owner, enabling installation and maintenance of the solar PV panels.

South Somerset Community Energy earns income from the installations through three sources:

  • Solar electricity generated, which can be used directly by the host building, is sold to the building occupier under a long term agreement at less than half the cost that they currently pay for electricity
  • Solar electricity generated, that cannot be used directly by the host building, may (depending on the project) be exported to the local electricity grid and sold to an electricity supplier
  • A subsidy called the Feed-in Tariff provides payments for every unit of electricity generated. The Feed-in Tariff is guaranteed for 20 years and increases annually with inflation

This income is used to:

  • Cover the costs of maintaining the renewable energy installations, running the Society (e.g. management costs, insurances, accountancy and audit fees) and building up a reserve fund
  • Repay loans to the Society and pay Members a return on their social investment
  • All surplus income will be used by SSCES to support projects addressing fuel poverty and climate change in the district.

The Rules of South Somerset Community Energy are available on the Download page. The Rules set out the community objectives of SSCES, how it is governed and how its community purpose is protected (including an 'Asset Lock').

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