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The Bridport Renewable Energy Group and Wessex Community Assets have worked together to create a new company – Bridport Energy Services Limited (BESCo). The mission of this new social enterprise is to tackle climate change by helping the community develop local assets which provide energy services.


BESCo’s Aims & Objectives are:


  1. To raise funds for renewable energy
    1. By seeking funds from the community through a share issue
    2. By seeking grants
    3. By seeking loans
    4. By re-investing a proportion of any surpluses


  1. To create assets which produce income from renewable energy
    1. By identifying partners on whose sites these assets will be located
    2. By installing the energy installations
    3. By contracting the sale of the energy produced


  1. To use the income for a blend of social and financial returns
    1. By returning a fair income to funders and contractors
    2. By re-investing surpluses in further installations or in the provision of energy services for community benefit purposes


BREG and Wessex Community Assets have been funded by West Dorset Partnership to carry out this project, and are working together to:

  • register BESCo as an Industrial and Provident Society;
  • prepare a Business Plan for BESCo;
  • advise BREG and the initial board of BESCo on governance issues;
  • prepare guidance and a detailed timetable for a community share issue.

The current status is that the IPS has been registered with the Financial Services Authority. The first development is to be a pv installation, a site has been secured, and planning permission has been applied for.


A number of potential projects have been identified:

  1. Purchase of an existing PV system from a partner charity, with income derived from Feed in Tariff (FIT’s)
  2. Work with developer of community housing scheme (30 homes) to implement renewable energy (electricity and/or heat) scheme.
  3. Implement a range of renewable energy schemes at a farm owned by an educational charity (solar thermal, PV, biomass heating and anaerobic digestion)
  4. Implement renewable energy at a permaculture market garden and educational centre, as part of the redevelopment plans. This might be provision of an integrated system of electricity, heat and AD.
  5. Implement renewable energy at a small farm on the outskirts of Bridport, with the potential for an anaerobic digestion installation.
  6. Secure a site and implement a model “Energy Farm” on the basis of integrated food and energy production. The scope of this would be a theoretically ‘complete’ implementation, optimising the provision of renewable energy (exploiting FIT and RHI) with the activities of a small farm producing food and processing organic waste by anaerobic digestion.


Please contact BREG if you should wish to be involved in this exciting project.

Revised June 2011

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