Pilot - Manor Royal Business District - West Sussex County Council

West Sussex County Council has worked with the Manor Royal Business District near Gatwick Airport to launch the Re-Energise Manor Royal local energy community (LEC). 

Manor Royal is one of the largest business parks in the south-east of England. It is home to approximately 700 businesses of different sizes and sectors that employ around 30,000 people.

Feasibility work conducted during the BISEPS project identified several ‘business clusters’ where suitable renewable energy technologies, including solar PV, battery storage, could be installed. The project also identified the potential for a local district heat network.

Following its launch in March 23, Re-Energise Manor Royal is now working on behalf of businesses to attract investment and deliver new clean energy projects for the business district, such as roof-mounted solar panels and batteries to store clean electricity. This will help businesses to reduce their energy costs and carbon emissions, take control of their energy supply and move towards net zero operation.

The first solar PV projects are underway. These will secure a long-term income for the community and enable it to provide other benefits for member businesses in the years ahead, including peer-to-peer energy trading and aggregating locally generated energy to secure the best financial return.

Re-Energise Manor Royal operates on a not-for-profit basis and has been established as a Community Benefit Society. It reinvests the financial surplus it makes from selling energy and other services into new energy projects that benefit members and the wider community.

West Sussex County Council has worked closely with Crawley Borough Council and the Manor Royal Business Improvement District, a local body that represents companies within the business district, to create Re-Energise Manor Royal.

Alongside its contribution to establishing Re-Energise Manor Royal, the Interreg 2 Seas Programme has also provided a £500,000 grant towards a large, grid connected battery facility being developed by West Sussex County Council on a former waste site at Halewick Lane, Sompting.

The 24MW facility will support community owned energy projects in the area by operating as the core of a virtual power plant.

Contact: Ingrid Bennett (LECSEA Project Manager - West Sussex County Council) ingrid.bennett at westsussex.gov.uk