We did it!

We’re delighted to announce that we reached our share offer target of £100,000 on Friday evening and we have therefore closed the share offer to new applications.

Thanks so much to everyone who has invested and all of you who made the time to promote the project and share it with your contacts!

We did it

What happens next?

We’re still working hard to finalise the legal agreements we need to put in place before we can release the funds, order the equipment and start the installations.

We’ll update you again soon…

The Time Is Now!

Last Wednesday, two of our directors joined the thousands of people who travelled to London for The Time is Now – the largest ever mass lobby of MPs calling for urgent action on the climate and ecological emergency.

The Time Is Now

One of the things we were calling for was more support for community energy schemes – and in particular for the reintroduction of tax reliefs for investments in projects like GMCR now that the Government has withdrawn the Feed-in Tariff.

Of course, we’ve not been waiting for the Government to act, and we’ve been busy raising the £100,000 we need to fund solar arrays on three more primary schools in our latest share offer.

We’re really grateful to those of you who’ve already helped us get over 80% of the way towards our target.  The deadline for applications is this Friday, so if you’re thinking of applying for shares, the time is now!  🙂

And please do remind your friends and family about our share offer on Facebook, Twitter, or by sending them a link to our share offer page

Panels are going up on our sites

Over the summer holidays our installers have been hard at work installing panels. Here are some photos of the first installations:

Solar panels on a roof

Solar panels and the sunshine

Solar panels on a roof

It’s all systems go!

After a hectic few weeks of negotiations, we finally got the leases signed on Friday!

This was a crucial step as it meant that we could issue shares and start spending the money that our members have invested.

We wasted no time in making the first payment to our installer, NPS Solar, who are lined up to start work on the first installation next week.

We now have less than two months remaining to install panels on our four sites to meet that all important Feed-in Tariff deadline of 29 September 2016.

So while we’ve reached an important milestone, there is still lots to do before the celebrations can begin!


Getting closer…

Just a quick note to let you know where we’re up to with the leases for our solar project.

We’ve made good progress since our last update:

  • We reached an agreement with Salford City Council today on the content of the leases for the schools, and the Mayor has given his authorisation for the leases to be signed.
  • The final draft of the lease for The Fuse is being prepared, and is awaiting the consent it needs from a third party before it can be signed off.

While we’re getting closer, the leases haven’t been signed on the dotted line yet and so we haven’t released the funds from our investors today – as outlined in our share offer, we will only do so when the agreements have been secured.

Thanks for bearing with us, and we’ll update you again as soon as we have any more news.

We did it!

We’re delighted to announce that we reached our Optimum Share Offer target of £186,000 on Tuesday morning and we have therefore closed the Share Offer to new applications.

Thanks so much to everyone who has invested and all of you who made the time to promote the project and share it with your contacts!

We did it_440x220

What happens next?

We’re still working hard to finalise the legal agreements we need to put in place before we can release the funds, order the equipment and start the installations.

We’ll update you again soon…


In sight of the finish line…


Since our last update at the end of June, the response has been amazing!

We rocketed past the £140,000 minimum target needed to install solar panels on three sites – Primrose Hill Primary School in Ordsall, Irlam Primary School and The Fuse in Partington – and we’re now closing in on our optimum target of £186,000, which would enable us to fund panels at Fiddlers Lane in Irlam too.

The total investment pledged to date is over £173,000, and we’ve decided to extend the closing date a bit further to ensure that Fiddlers Lane doesn’t miss out – check out our Crowdfunder page to see how we’re getting on!

Recent activity

We’ve been working closely with our partners at Salford City Council and The Fuse on the leases and electricity supply agreements to make sure we have the legal permissions to install the panels and provide our electricity to the sites at a discounted price.

We have also kept up the promotional work with talks at the “No Planet B” festival event organised by Bolton Friends of the Earth, and stalls in Altrincham and at a festival on Kersal Moor in Salford.


Next steps

We’re looking forward to concluding the legal documents so we can accept the first £140,000 of pledges and start the installation process.

In the meantime, we have a little more time to continue our fundraising for the solar panels at Fiddlers Lane Primary School, the fourth site which we’re working on with Moss Community Energy.

If you know anyone who’s been thinking of investing, please do remind them to get their application in via our Crowdfunder page before it’s too late!

One day, one week, one quarter

First of all  – WOW! We have raised over £137,000 including offline investments.  Thank you to everyone who has invested, volunteered their time and/or shared the project with friends – you are amazing.


One day

With just one day left until our published closing date of 30 June, we are so close to our minimum target of £140,000.  Reaching our minimum target will be brilliant as it means we’ll be one step closer to installing solar panels at Irlam Primary, Primrose Hill Primary in Ordsall and at The Fuse in Partington.


One week

However, unless we meet the Optimum target we won’t be able to help Moss Community Energy install solar panels at Fiddlers Lane Primary School in Irlam.  That’s why we have decided to extend the Share Offer for one week to try to meet our Optimum target of £186,000 – so the new closing date is 7 July.

Let’s get behind them by funding a great low carbon, money saving, educational resource for the children and teachers there.

Fiddlers Lane 600x390

One quarter

Looking ahead, it is now three months until our deadline to install and register the solar panels with Ofgem so we can get the higher level of Feed-in Tariff (the payment for generating clean electricity) from last year. This is why we need to install the panels in the school summer holidays, so we are on a tight timeline to raise the funds, order the panels and get our legal ducks in a row in time to start work when the children are safely offsite.

Thanks for all your support, and let’s see if we can reach the £186,000 mark by next Thursday!

We’re over half way there!

Great news – we have passed the half way mark to our minimum target!

Including offline investments, we’ve raised over £80,000 – a massive thank you to all of you who have invested so far!

With less than a week left, it’s time to remind everyone who’s been thinking about investing in our project to help schools, the environment and the local community, to do so right away.

So please take a look at the Share Offer if you haven’t already, and ask three friends to do the same. We have put some suggested wording you can use at the end of this update. And of course, please keep sharing our Crowdfunder page on social media.

Our programme of publicity is continuing right up to the 30 June deadline. Yesterday we gave a presentation at a Nuclear Free Local Authorities event, and today we were pleased to be promoting our project at the Rixton with Glazebrook Carnival, just down the road from two of our schools in Irlam.

Rixton with Glazebrook Carnival


Upcoming events

Tomorrow, we’ll be at Altrincham Market from 11am to talk to shoppers about installing panels at The Fuse, a great community facility in nearby Partington.

And don’t forget to book for our community energy meet-up, which starts at 6.30pm on Tuesday 28 June at the Castle Hotel on Oldham Street in Manchester city centre.

Thanks for your support, and we hope to see some of you on Tuesday!


Example email to send to your friends

Have you heard about GMCR’s solar project?

Greater Manchester Community Renewables and Moss Community Energy have joined forces to fund the installation of solar panels at 3 primary schools – Primrose Hill in Ordsall, Irlam Primary & Fiddlers Lane in Irlam – and The Fuse, a community building in Partington.

This will save them money, reduce carbon emissions and inspire children (and grown-ups!) to learn about energy and climate change – and surpluses will go into a Community Fund to support eco-friendly projects in the local area.

GMCR is raising the money to fund the project via a community share offer. Individuals and businesses can invest between £100 and £20,000, and investors will receive share interest of up to 5% per year, depending on the performance of the Society.

The share offer is due to close on Thursday 30 June, so please visit GMCR’s Crowdfunder page at as soon as you can and help all four sites get their solar panels.

Happy Summer Solstice!

It’s Summer Solstice and Co-operatives Fortnight, so what better time than to invest in a community-owned solar project aiming to:

  • install solar panels on 3 schools and a community hub, saving them money on their bills;
  • generate over 100,000 kWh of clean electricity per year, helping to reduce carbon emissions;
  • create an income stream in the form of a Community Fund for future eco-friendly projects;
  • provide you with a projected return of up to 5% each year.

We’ve been busy promoting the project at various events, including the Makers Market in Spinningfields and Manchester Museum’s Climate Control exhibition, where we met this fellow…

Museum 400x300

Upcoming events

Next weekend, we’ll be at the Rixton with Glazebrook Carnival in Hollins Green from 11am on Saturday 25 June. Let us know if you’d like to come along and help out.

We’ve also organised a community energy meet-up on Tuesday 28 June at the Castle Hotel, Oldham Street in the Northern Quarter in Manchester city centre, from 6.30pm. All welcome!

10 days to go!

We’re pleased to have reached over £66,000 (including offline subscriptions), which is almost half way to our Minimum target.

Thanks so much to everyone who has supported us – from those who have invested, to those who have shared our story with friends and contacts.

Please do keep spreading the word, and consider investing if you can!