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Community solar groups

Are you part of an existing community energy group or climate-focused group? Would you like to set up a new group locally? Either way the Big Solar Co-op is designed to help you make more solar happen in your area.

There are lots of community solar groups across the UK. Some are thriving, but many are struggling to continue developing new sites. Our parent Sharenergy helped to develop some of the UK’s first solar co-ops. But with changes in government policy and support,  some have stagnated. We can help get your group working again. Either you can join as individuals or your group can host a node of Big Solar Co-op.

Big Solar Co-op nodes

We’re developing ‘nodes’ of local activists across the country. The first are in Birmingham, Stroud and Telford & Shropshire. These provide:

  • A business model that works for a wide variety of host sites 
  • Training courses covering practical skills like solar design, finding and approaching sites, legal agreements
  • Support to fund a part-time local co-ordinator post
  • A network of other activists across the UK to help you

Our approach may involve a culture shift for some groups. Our focus is on combating the climate crisis rather than local ownership. But we are completely rooted in co-operative values and everything we do is powered and owned by volunteers. We can achieve a lot more when we work together.   

Here are Kathy and Laurie from Community Energy Birmingham explaining why they have chosen to work with the Big Solar Co-op to kickstart solar in Birmingham.