Southill Community Energy has developed and operates Southill Solar, a community-owned solar farm on a 45 acre site on the Cornbury Estate, that has been generating green energy since 2016. It produces enough green energy to power over 1000 homes in Charlbury, Finstock & Fawler for the next 25 years.
The amount of electricity produced can be seen in real time by checking the generation data which is refreshed at 5 minute intervals.
The site lies in an AONB so the group minimised the visual impact of the project by locating the panels in a fold of land not visible from the road. They work with an ecologist to implement a biodiversity enhancement plan and have their own bee-keeper who created a Thermosolar Beehive, the first of its kind in the UK.
As a community benefit society, SCE use surplus funds generated by the solar farm to inspire and encourage local low-carbon initiatives in the community through a programme of grants. The funds are distributed by another LCH community group, Sustainable Charlbury.