MP helps mark 1000th solar panel home

29 October 2014
MP Jonathan Reynolds at Kedleston Walk, Denton

MP Jonathan Reynolds praised a project to fit solar panels to New Charter homes in Tameside during a visit to the 1000th property to be fitted with the technology.

Jonathan Reynolds, Shadow Minister for Energy and Climate Change and Stalybridge and Hyde MP, joined New Charter Chief Executive Ian Munro to chat to tenants Glenis Parkes and Robert Wilding at Kedleston Walk on Friday (24 October).

The Denton bungalow is the 1000th of around 4,500 homes due to benefit from the solar panels after New Charter Homes signed a deal set to save tenants around £40m in reduced electricity bills over the next 25 years.

The renewable technology – which generates energy from the sun - will work in conjunction with the Government’s Feed-In Tariff (FIT) scheme and could cut tenants’ electricity bills by between £200 and £400 a year.

“This is a project that not only makes sense for the environment – it makes financial sense too,” said Mr Reynolds.

“The installation of solar panels allows tenants to generate their own energy – and by generating surplus electricity I understand they could save as much as £400 a year.

“Too often it’s those living in the rented sector that face higher energy bills because of a landlord’s failure to address heat loss.

“However this is a ground-breaking scheme that highlights the positive measures that can be adopted by responsible landlords.”

It’s been estimated that over the next 25 years it could save tenants around £40million – and could cut carbon emissions by 112,500 tonnes.

Installations – which will involve New Charter’s own building company – will continue over 12 months and will be fitted to suitable homes.

Once complete New Charter Building Company is looking to undertake all on-going maintenance of the systems.

Speaking after the launch of the £18m scheme in August, chief executive of the Jigsaw Group Ian Munro said: “Our tenants will benefit massively from cheaper fuel bills provided by the technology while reducing our carbon footprint considerably.

“While this technology will help a large number of our tenants, we know that not all homes will be suitable, so we’re looking at other energy saving possibilities for those homes not suitable for solar panels.”