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Wokingham Church Spends Grant Pounds on Solar System

Solar panels for the Cornerstone after grant success

By Julie Spencer 
October 05, 2012

A church is raising its solar-panelled roof in celebration after winning a grant for its energy-saving community centre.
The congregation at All Saints Church celebrate winning the grant for new solar panels at the Cornerstone
The congregation at All Saints Church celebrate 
winning the grant for new solar panels at the Cornerstone

The Cornerstone Centre has been awarded £10,000 from energy company EDF, to the delight of members of All Saints Church.
The payment vindicates their decision to borrow from church funds to pay for the solar panels so the scheme would qualify for a higher Government energy tariff.
Tamzin Evershed, who leads the Norreys Avenue church’s carbon reduction committee, said: “We took a sensible gamble and it has paid off.
“When I opened the letter last week I couldn’t quite believe it but we are all delighted.”
The church submitted a grant application for half the cost of the 34 panels back in February but had heard nothing by May.
With the Government deadline of August 1 looming, the church went ahead with the scheme with 50 per cent paid for by the congregation and donations from the community via an online Just Giving page.
Mrs Evershed continued: “We were put in a very difficult position because the Government was cutting the feed-in tariff after August 1.
“We want to use money we get back from power generated by the panels to maintain the Cornerstone Centre and also to support the many well-deserving causes that need help in the Norreys area.
“If we had waited until August 1 we would have received a much reduced tariff but now we are on this feed-in tariff for the next 25 years.
“It secures extra income for us as we would like to maintain the facilities at the Cornerstone to a high level.”
The solar panels will reduce the energy costs of the Cornerstone and it is hoped they could generate revenue of around £1,000 a year.
The panels are part of the church’s ongoing commitment to cut its carbon footprint.
It has already received an Eco-Congregation Award and is currently in the middle of its Creation Time period of worship, preaching and sermons which focus on environmental issues.
The carbon reduction committee is also monitoring air temperature in the church, and investigating insulation and green heating sources.

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