Chippenham school taps into solar power

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Year 6 eco monitors, from left, Alice, Ben, Mia and Leighton Year 6 eco monitors, from left, Alice, Ben, Mia and Leighton

A Chippenham primary school is managing to offset some of its energy costs after it had solar panels installed on the roof.

King’s Lodge School in Lodge Road, Pewsham will also be able to use its new photovoltaic (PV) system to teach pupils about sustainability.

Deputy headteacher Peter Shewring said: “This is something that we are very excited about in school and hope to use as a teaching aid on renewable energy in the future.

“We will be using the data generated to help our children understand about energy generation and use.”

The system could save the school around 19,000 kg of carbon every year by generating 21,600 kWh of renewable electricity, which the school buys back at a discounted cost.

King’s Lodge already has an active eco-club looking at its recycling and energy use.

Following the installation of the panels last month, pupils recycled the huge cardboard boxes they came in with imaginative play, involving building houses and sleighs to travel to the North Pole.

Mr Shewring said: “It was a truly exciting and imaginative experience.

“The solar PV will be a great vehicle for us to use to help the children look at initiatives like Switch Off Fortnight in a different way. By reducing our energy use the children should see that a greater proportion of our total energy use is met by the renewable energy.

“The more children understand the principles of sustainability, the better they will be when they grow up about making life choices.”

The system was installed under the Power Your Future programme, managed by Winch Energy, and is funded by Engynious Clean Power (UK).

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