Financial services company Virgin Money has granted a £14 million financial package to support Ripple Energy’s 18.8MW consumer-owned wind farm in Ayrshire, Scotland.
The package will facilitate the construction and operation of the eight turbine Kirk Hill Wind Farm.
Consumers will be able to buy shares of the wind farm from only £25 and receive money off their energy bills according to the amount of energy produced at the site.
The site received 16,000 reservations during its seven day purchase priority window in February 2023 and is now owned by 5,600 households and 19 SME businesses throughout Britain.
Commercial property investor and developer Bruntwood also purchased a “industry-first” 42.2% share in the wind farm.
“We are accelerating our drive to fast-track more renewable projects to contribute to the carbon reduction journey as quickly as possible,” says Adam Heslop, Virgin Money’s senior director, renewable energy.
“It’s particularly pleasing to facilitate this project alongside Ripple Energy’s team who have an excellent track record of developing renewable energy projects successfully and effectively. The strength and experience of our Renewables Team helped us understand their unique business model and see its potential for growth. There is also the bonus of involving individuals, businesses and local communities UK-wide directly in the investment and the rewards of the project.”
Ripple Founder & CEO Sarah Merrick added: “We are extremely pleased Virgin Money made a proactive approach to Ripple. Alongside our members, this support is helping to drive a momentous shift towards consumer ownership in the energy market.
“We want these pioneering projects to become a blueprint for consumer-owned wind farms and solar parks around the world. We want to create a wave of green energy ownership that enables people to make a real climate impact, as well as stabilising their energy bills.”
Following the announcement of the organisation’s first community-owned solar farm, Current± sat down with Merrick to discuss how co-owned renewable energy sites can shape the UK’s future energy system. The full article can be found here.