Fold's £1m Solar Panel Contract to Combat Fuel Poverty

13 August 2015

Fold Housing Association is making one of the most significant investments in PV technology seen to date in Northern Ireland by awarding a contract worth over £1m for the supply and installation of PV solar panels.
 
A consortium made up of Solmatix Renewables and Harvey Group will install the panels at approximately 100 sites across Northern Ireland during this financial year in a bid to reduce Fold's overall carbon footprint and combat fuel poverty. The payback period will be seven years.
 
Established in 1976, Fold is one of the leading housing associations in Northern Ireland, supporting over 30,000 customers through housing, care and support. Fold manages over 6,000 homes covering family, sheltered and complex client need groups. With a turnover of £40m the social enterprise employs 800 people in 60 towns across Northern Ireland. 
 
Eileen Patterson, Fold's Director of Housing, said: 'Fold Housing Association is proud to be making such a significant investment in the use of renewable technology at our schemes. We take the issue of fuel poverty seriously and we are working with our tenants to provide effective and sustainable solutions. Over the last 10 years, Fold has invested in a number of energy efficiency systems in an effort to reduce fuel and energy costs for tenants and to improve our carbon footprint.
 
'We have installed solar panels across a number of general needs housing schemes and in our experience we have found passive systems such as solar panels and increased insulation to be most effective. We look forward to working with both companies as we roll this project out in the coming months.'
 
Richard Bell, Managing Director of Solmatix Renewables explains, securing the work brings more than just financial benefits. He said: 'We are delighted to have won this Fold tender in association with our partner, Harvey Group. Not only does it help us to secure employment within our organisations, but just as importantly the £1.2m installation will generate reliable, sustainable solar electricity.  This means real savings for Fold tenants, and real benefits for our environment.
 
Brian Harvey, Managing Director of Harvey Group, commented: 'Together with Solmatix, we are delighted to have been selected by Fold for this contract on the basis of our price and quality. These are values that we share in common and we look forward to delivering our first high quality and sustainable energy solution as a consortium, to serve the social housing sector.'
 
Rachel Sankannawar, Business Development and Tenders Manager at Action Renewables, said: "Action Renewables is delighted to be working with Fold Housing Association in the procurement and contract management of solar PV for over 100 sites. This is a forward thinking initiative by Fold Housing Association. By the uptake of renewable energy, Fold has secured long term, low cost, low carbon electricity for their tenants. Action Renewables is thrilled to be facilitating this venture."
 
Pictured Above: (L-R) Ann Manning, a tenant in Copeland Fold in Donaghadee, is pictured with Rachel Sankannawar, Business Development and Tenders Manager at Action Renewables, Eileen Patterson, Director of Housing at Fold, and Neville Bell, Sales Manager at Solmatix Renewables.

Pictured below: Representative from Fold Housing Association, Harvey Group & Solmatix, Action Renewables meet Ann & Alan Manning, tenants at Copland Fold, Donaghadee who will benefit fromt the £1m solar panel investment by Fold.

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