Bishop’s Castle Heat Network

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall speaking at the Town Forum

Funded by a grant received from Power to Change , STCE commissioned consultants from Sharenergy and Carbon Alternatives to find a renewable energy solution for the town of Bishop’s Castle in south Shropshire. After extensive research, a community-owned heat network is being proposed. This would enable substantial carbon savings by helping people to move away from oil and LPG for their heating. The details of the heat network are still to be developed, but it could supply houses, schools, and other community buildings in the town. Ideally, this heat network would be powered by a community owned 1MW wind turbine. This way, every unit of electricity from the turbine could be turned into 3 or 4 units of heat by the heat pumps, and any profit made would go back into funding community projects. The proposal has unanimous backing of the Town Council, and huge local support. Public meetings have been held in the town, including one attended by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall which featured on Channel 4s Great Climate Fight in Nov 2023.

We now have permission to submit a planning application for the wind turbine and ecology studies have started. Further funding is being sought from the Community Energy Fund managed by the Midlands net Zero Hub. See Lightfoot Enterprise’s website for more information on this project.

A video of The Climate Show with Tom Heap which goes into more detail about the Swaffham Prior Heat Network is available here.