Funding for community energy projects
CSE is administering, with Pure Leapfrog, the government-funded £10m Urban Community Energy Fund (UCEF) which was launched in November 2014. The scheme funds community renewable energy projects through their development phase, to determine viability, and to get them ‘investment ready’. In other words, the funding helps overcome hurdles to get projects to the stage where they are sound propositions for a bank or other financer to take through to construction.
Both grants and loans are available. The maximum grant is £20k and the maximum loan is £130k. The loans are ‘contingent loans’, which means they don’t have to be paid back if the project can’t proceed to construction phase. Successful projects will pay back their loans, so replenishing the fund.
UCEF was set up to complement the Rural Community Energy Fund (RCEF), so to be eligible for UCEF funding your project must be based in an urban area - look at CSE's eligibility checker if you're not sure which fund to apply for www.cse.org.uk/ucef-eligibility-map.
There is an application process for the grants and loans, with bi-monthly deadlines and a fast turnaround. Support throughout the process is available from the team at CSE and you're strongly encouraged to get in touch before submitting an application to discuss your proposal.
To find out more, look at the web page www.cse.org.uk/ucef, call 0800 038 6345, or email firstname.lastname@example.org