Solar firm boost for Market Drayton centre

A community-owned arts and entertainment centre in north Shropshire is celebrating a green energy boost, thanks to a local solar farm.

The Festival Drayton Centre, pictured, has received £4,000 which has been put towards installing solar panels at the Market Drayton venue, thanks to the Twemlows solar farm, community benefit fund managed by Shropshire and Telford Community Energy (STCE).

Geoff Vernon, chair of Festival Drayton, said: “Festival Drayton Centre is a long-established charity and not-for-profit multi-purpose community and arts centre.

“We are a valued social hub for the area, providing opportunities for both volunteering and to experience cinema and events in our local community.

“With help from the STCE grant fund we have installed solar PV panels on the roof of our centre to provide solar energy for when we need it and to generate renewable power and heating to the building, thus making a considerable reduction in carbon emissions.

“As we run a coffee shop, cinema and live events in our centre, we are heavy users of electricity. The investment in solar panels will not only be cost-effective but have environmental benefits as well.”

The new solar panels will significantly cut the centre’s large energy bill, helping to ensure the sustainability of the highly-valued community building.

Dave Green, secretary of STCE, said: “We are very pleased to use our community benefit fund to support this important investment in the very popular Festival Drayton Centre. Our Twemlows solar farm is only nine miles from Market Drayton, and it is important to us that we support projects like these which will benefit our neighbours for years to come.”

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