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Creating the Greenest County Awards 2014 - Winner!

Now in their seventh year, the Creating the Greenest County Awards are an annual event that highlight the excellent environmental achievements that are being carried out across the county. Communities, businesses, schools and individuals, from protecting our natural landscape to developing innovative ways to reduce carbon emissions to reducing waste, everyone is doing their bit to help make Suffolk the greenest county.

Stutton Green Energy won the award in the Renewable Energy category

Stutton Green Energy completed the installation of 40 solar panelsom th Comunity Hall, and the key features of our submission are listed below:

  • The community shop is provided with free electricity
  • The hall receives an anual income from the electricity feed in and export tariffs
  • Great support has been received from Stuttoncommunity,both individuals and organisations raising £18,000 to bring the project to fruition
  • Over 6.79MWh of electricity already generated, and contributed towards carbon reduction targets.
  • We aim to raise environmental issues in the village of Stutton, through public meetings, village newsletter and advice sessions
  • Informed the community about green energy sources
  • Assisted homeowners to select contractors to install solar panels
  • Encourage better insulation and used a thermal imaging camera to illustrate heat loss
  • Help householders to switch to a better tariff with a different electricity supplier.


Stutton Green Energy Community Group

Solar Panels and the Community Hall

The panels are now fitted! Thank you to all who have so generously contributed to make this possible

Click here to view how much energy they are producing


Thank you to all who attended the public meeting. We were immensely heartened by the positive response we received and the willingness of so many of you to get involved in Stutton Green Energy. As you know our plan to install PV panels on the community hall’s roof depended upon receiving a guaranteed, and in retrospect, a generous payment for the coming 25 years.

Many of you will have heard that on 31 October the Government announced changes to the Feed In Tariff (FIT). We were working to an installation date of 1st April 2012 in line with the published rules. The announcement brought this qualifying date forward to 12 December and cut the FIT payment by 50%. Our plans were based on a financial model providing an income at the higher FIT. We have assessed what steps we have to complete to meet the new deadline and have decided that this cannot be achieved. In any event our preferred partner confirmed that they cannot install the panels by the due date.

Our next step is to work out options as to how a modified scheme on the hall’s roof might be progressed.

In the meantime our group will continue to work towards helping householders to reduce their energy consumption.

How to save money on your energy bills

Did you know? A fully insulated home will save you between £130 and £160 per year on your energy bill, and reduce your carbon footprint by 1.8 tonnes per year.

The Government has set a target of every home in the UK being fully insulated by 2015 to the current Building Regulations Standard, which is 270mm (11 inches) of Loft Insulation.

Government funding to help everyone (whatever their income) fully insulate their home means that the price of insulation has been reduced.

  • Full Loft Insulation is £169 (subject to survey)
  • Top-up Loft Insulation is £229 (subject to survey)
  • Cavity Wall Insulation is £169 (subject to survey)

If you receive an income related benefit or are aged 70 or over, you can get loft and cavity wall insulation for FREE.

Aran Services of Bury St Edmunds is the accredited local insulation installer for Suffolk. To arrange a referral to Aran Services and a survey and quote, contact the Suffolk Climate & Energy Helpline on 0800 02 88 938.

If you’ve got any queries about any of this, ring Janet White on 326852 or Jenny Morris on 328984.

We held our initial public meeting on Monday 24 October 2012, and the presentation we used is published below, either as a PowerPoint 2007 file or a PDF. The files include the actual voting responses from the 28 members of the public present. This represents a wonderful start to our project, but it is only the start and we will need further investors to make the project viable. If you would like to be part of this exciting project please email us here -

PDF Logo SGE Presentation.pdf

SGE Presentation.pptx


September 2011

We have set up a community group called Stutton Green Energy. Our aim is to promote a reduction in carbon emissions and help households to save on their energy bills. We aim to:

  1. Encourage individual householders to take up the going green challenge, raise awareness amongst local people of how to reduce energy costs and of any assistance available, and give extra help to those less able to do it for themselves
  2. Developing a community based Photo Voltaic electricity generation scheme that will benefit the community hall and community shop
  3. Use surplus income to develop other green energy initiatives which will benefit the local community.

At the moment we are focussing our efforts on PV systems. These panels, generally mounted on roofs, convert sunlight into electricity. For every Kilowatt Hour of electricity produced the householder gets paid 43.3 pence. In addition to the “free electricity” that the house holder can use (making a saving) a further 3.1p per Kilowatt Hour is paid for electricity exported to the grid. This is paid at 50% of the electricity generated. These payment rates have been set by government, will rise with inflation and are guaranteed for 25 years. However, we believe that these generous rates will be reduced next April. So we believe that there’s a need to act now.


We have chosen a supplier for Solar PV panels to generate electricity for us - CJ Electrical, 01473 276688. We have negotiated a group discount which amounts to £200 per kilowatt installed, with a minimum discount of £500 per installation, along with a free wireless monitor worth £310. This discount is on top of the lowest price already compared to other suppliers, using top quality kit. CJ do not subcontract, offer a 10 year insurance backed guarantee, are local, and do not take any payment until you are fully satisfied with the installation. At the moment, most of the quotes that we have had are working out at a return of about 11% per year, with a payback time of between 7 and 8 years. If you are interested please contact CJ Electrical or if you want to talk about it further call Rik Bond, 326906,

Our major challenge is to develop a community based electricity generation scheme set on the village hall roof. We are grateful to the Hall’s Management Committee for agreeing to the scheme in principle, subject to a number of detailed issues being resolved. The cost of the project will be just over £30,000. For this we need to raise money and we are looking to Stutton’s community to become investors. We are following a model that has been used successfully in Stoke by Nayland. We envisage that investors will be paid a return of 3%-4% per annum. In addition to paying a sum to the hall for use of the roof (which will help subsidise the hall’s venue charges) we hope to use any surplus to develop other initiatives in the community.

If you are interested in developing local sustainable solutions to help our village please come along to a public meeting at the Community Hall on Monday 24 October at 7.30pm.

Bill Hewlett, 328541,


July 2011

Following Penny Clarke's invitation to a meeting in June, we heard from John Taylor of Suffolk Climate Change Partnership about green energy production (e.g. photovoltaic cells, solar thermal, ground source heat pumps and wind turbines) and energy conservation (improved insulation). We have since formed Stutton Green Energy Alliance. Members of the group have begun to get quotes for installing photovoltaic panels on their houses. We are looking at home installations first, before considering other community options (see below) . So what are photovoltaic (PV) panels? Solar PV are silicon panels that generate electricity from sunlight. They work best facing due south, although a range from SE to SW is feasible. They are one of the easiest technologies as there are no moving parts, they can be fixed onto existing roofs or set up independently on their own mountings. Typical domestic systems are around 2.2 kW in size, cost in the order of £10,000, and can provide around 1,850 kWh a year, The Energy Savings Trust says that this is over 40% of the electricity used by a typical household. Apart from making savings on the electricity produced, the good news is that you also get paid for every unit that gets fed into the electricity system. This is called the 'feed in tariff' (FIT). The payback can be up to 11% per annum on your original investment performing significantly better than any ISA or other investment you may currently hold. There is a need to act fairly swiftly as the government's FIT will reduce considerably after April 2012. We are identifying a couple of installers who seem to offer the best quality and we aim to arrange a group discount - the more households wanting to join the scheme the better the discounts may be. We are meeting to discuss quotes on 4th August. If you are interested in becoming part of this group, please contact Rik Bond -

Community Hall

We also plan to investigate installing Solar PV panels on the roof of the Community Hall. In addition to creating an income via the FIT there would be direct benefits of cheaper electricity for both the hall and for the Community Shop. But the installation could cost around £30,000. The Suffolk Climate Change Partnership tell us that most community-owned renewable energy projects are set up as a Community Benefit Society or a Cooperative. In this way the panels would be owned by the village, run by the village and would remain in village. Finance is raised by issuing community shares, so local people would invest in the project and, once the scheme is generating an income, they will receive a dividend. Similar schemes have been offering returns of around 4%-5%. This is much better return than you could get from a bank or building society account. So by investing locally not only could you help yourself you could also help the community. Jenny Morris, Ken Wilson and I are exploring all the options. And we need to gauge interest from members of Stutton's community. Of course at this stage there would be no obligation. So if you are interested doing your bit to help the environment helping the village and helping yourself too by investing in the project please get in touch with - Bill Hewlett -



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