Welcome to Community Energy England's funding opportunities page, where we gather a range of ongoing and time-limited funding from a wide range of sources and regions, all relevant to community energy organisations in England.
Community Energy Fund (CEF)
The new £10million Community Energy Fund (CEF) will initially be based upon the same criteria as the previous Rural Community Energy Fund, although will be opened up to applicants from urban areas. The aim of the fund is to help kickstart projects including small-scale wind farms and rooftop solar partnerships, as well as battery storage, rural heat networks, electric vehicle charging points, and fuel poverty alleviation schemes - all proposed, designed and owned by local people.
CEE has created a dedicated webpage page which will provide you with tools and resources to help you craft a successful application to the Community Energy Fund and will keep you updated on developments and updates, as we hear about them.
Grant application advice
CEE convened a Grant applications workshop during Community Energy Fortnight 2023. It is here on our YouTube channel. Top tips for funding applications and notes from the workshop are also available here and here.
All other funding
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Latest Funding Opportunities
Energy Redress Scheme
The seventh funding round of phase two of the Energy Redress Scheme has closed. You are able to register your expression of interest before the next round opens. Please keep your eye on the dedicated CEE webpage which is kept up to date with information and details of the fund. You can find the page here.
Low Carbon Culture and Community Project
The Low Carbon Culture and Community Project provides expert support and funding for community or cultural organisations wanting to spend less on energy and produce less carbon emissions. The project includes a grant scheme through which you may be able to apply for funding to help pay for your energy-saving changes. Applications will be reviewed on a first come, first served basis.
A future opportunity to apply for funding to the ACCESS Flexible Fund Round 2.
The aim of the fund is to support projects that will enhance the visibility, use and impact of climate and environment social science. Applications open on Monday 5 February 2024 and full guidance on how to apply will be published on the ACCESS website in February 2024. The total fund amount is £700,000 and the award range is between, £200,000 to £250,000. ACCESS are particularly keen to see an increased use of social science amongst specific target groups (e.g. people in diverse sectors (business/industry, civil society, public sector), non-social scientists (e.g. natural scientists, engineering and physical scientists, journalists and media actors) and encourage submissions that have been co-produced between academic leads and non-academic partners. The closing date for applications will be 30 April 2024.
Horsham District Community Climate Fund
Horsham District Council aims to enable local community groups and organisations to take action to reduce carbon emissions in their local communities. Their fund will support new projects that will make a difference and also benefit the wider community. Find out more about their priority categories that projects must align with, here. The next funding round opens on 1 April 2024 and closes on 12 May 2024.
Government "Find a grant service"
The government's "Find a grant" service allows you to search government grants. You can use it to access government grant funding, search and filter to find a grant that matches your needs, find out if you are eligible to apply for a grant and how to apply for a grant.
Climate Action Fund - Energy and Climate
This funding is available for a UK-wide Learning Network to support community-driven energy projects across the UK. They expect to fund 8-12 large awards in total (minimum grant £500k). You can find out more about this funding in this blog here. We expect the programme to remain open until early 2024 but it will depend on when and how many others apply for funding. The deadline for new applications is on 1 March 2024 at midday.
Awards4All and The People's Postcode Lottery (supporting staff and employment costs)
These two funds were noted as particularly useful for helping organisations support employment and staff costs associated with projects. Awards4All is up to £10,000 and the Postcode Lottery, up to £25,000.
Baywind Energy Co-operative Ltd (£1 million for solar and hydro sites)
Baywind Energy Co-operative Ltd is a mature community energy organisation actively looking for solar sites (above 20kW) and hydro sites. They are focused in Cumbria, but are open to support projects across the country. They will also be able to help install, maintain and own solar systems for 20 years at cost of a unit price much lower than commercial rates for those interested. For more information, please contact Steve Lawer: firstname.lastname@example.org
Patagonia Grant Scheme
Outdoor brand Patagonia supports organisations with bold, direct-action agendas and a commitment to long-term change. Patagonia provides funding for organisations that build involvement and civic engagement and work to build an inclusive and diverse environmental movement, among other criteria.
Community Business Crowd Match
Power to Change has launched this support package as part of the Community Business Renewal Initiative. The package includes funding, support to fundraising, guidance for community business leaders and help to continue and adapt services to ensure community businesses are at the heart of national recovery.
Grants for Good
The Matthew Good Foundation has launched a new fund for small charities and social enterprises. Every three months, five organisations are offered a share of a £10,000 pot. The fund is open to new projects with innovative ideas as well as established charities whose average income is less than £50,000 per year.
Energy Redress Scheme
Energy Saving Trust has been appointed by Ofgem to distribute payments from energy companies that may have breached rules. The Redress Scheme funding is available to support a wide range of activities, from engaging vulnerable customers to the installation of energy-saving or renewable energy measures. The amount of funding available through the scheme varies throughout the year and will be reviewed on a quarterly basis in October, January, April and July. CEE has collated a specific and public page with more details on the fund here.
Energy Networks Association Network Innovations Competition (NIC)
The electricity network companies have opened their Call for Ideas 2020/2021 for new, innovative and net zero solutions to the priority areas identified in the ENA Innovation Strategy, which can be taken forward and trialled on the networks, backed by up to £70m of funding. Anyone interested should contact their distribution network operator (DNO).
Aviva Community Fund
Aviva has partnered with Crowdfunder to support small charities and community groups with innovative ideas that benefit their communities and are looking to raise up to £50,000. Eligible causes can apply at any time.
Community Shares Booster Scheme
Community Businesses can access up to £10,000 to help launch community share offers, and up to £100,00 match-funding when the share offer goes live.
Community Renewable Energy Funding
The Naturesave Trust provides start-up 'seed corn' grants for community renewable energy projects. They are keen to help communities, in particular, that do not have the initial start-up capital to undertake all the preliminary work. The projects must be from community groups and companies seeking funding for specific renewable energy projects.
There are no deadlines for applications and no limits on the number of applications you can make. The Trustees aim to make a decision on applications within six to eight weeks of receipt of a completed application form.
“I’ve got an idea” is a micro fund for individuals (or small groups or organisations) who have a novel technical idea that they want to try out that will have a social or environmental benefit. It will cover a variety of different costs and there is no set deadline.
The Leathersellers' Company
This grant offers one-off, small grants (up to £3,000) to registered charities with an annual income below £200,000.
Local Energy Partnership (LEAP) Schemes (temporarily closed)
Multiple schemes to support funding for energy advice, boilers and other appliances. Broad criteria for customers that can access.
Bristol City Leap Community Energy Fund
This fund is designed to nurture a diverse range of projects rooted in our vibrant local communities. Whether you’re passionate about generating renewable energy, connecting to heat networks, making energy efficient building improvements, or championing low-carbon transportation solutions – the fund could help get your project off the ground. A range of funding options are availble, from a starting grant of £500 to help you test your project idea, to more substantial funding up to £50,000.
West Yorkshire Community Climate Grants
The Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, and the Combined Authority, are working with local authorities to offer grants of up to £50,000 to fund climate friendly schemes. Funding of between £5,000 and £50,000 is available for projects that prioritise (1) Local, clean, and flexible energy solutions; (2) Healthy, affordable and efficient buildings; (3) Walking, cycling and public transport; or (4) Green and climate-ready nature solutions.
Community First Yorkshire
Securing funding and planning for the future is vital. Community First Yorkshire can help you on your funding journey by finding the right funds to apply for, assisting you with the application and helping you become ‘funding ready’.
Green Directory for Retrofit
Somerset has set up a new directory to support retrofit delivery. There includes various resources and links, including a useful page on funding.
West of England Business Innovation Fund (temporarily closed)
Companies in the West of England can now apply for grants of £20-75k from the Business Innovation Fund. The fund supports businesses from a wide range of sectors to help develop innovative products, processes and services, that not only fulfil market demand but also deliver industrial growth.
Low Carbon Growth Fund
Small and medium-sized businesses, public sector organisations, and community groups developing low carbon projects across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham, and Nottinghamshire are being urged to apply for investment through the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership’s new Low Carbon Growth Fund.
Community Partnering Fund
Leeds Community Foundation, Northern Gas Network and Northern Powergrid are offering grants of between £1,000 - £10,000 to support community organisations across the North of England.
3D Hub Community Funding
Community groups in the Birmingham area can apply for up to £10,000 to design and deliver data driver decarbonisation projects.
The Community and Environment Fund
The Community Environment Fund has been created to compensate communities that are demonstrably disrupted by the construction of Phase One of HS2 from London to the West Midlands.
Severn Trent Community Fund
The Severn Trent Community Fund is open to projects that focus on increasing community wellbeing, ideally which incorporate People, Places and Environment.
Blackstone Edge Wind Farm Community Benefits Fund (temporarily closed)
Local areas located within a 5km boundary of the wind farm at Blackstone Edge, West Barnsley can apply for a grant for projects focusing on environmental protection, energy conservation, sustainable transport and promotion of civic responsibility/community development.
Energy Efficiency Grants for SMEs in East Sussex
Grants of up to £1,000 to cover 40% of the cost of an energy efficiency project, such as LED lighting, insulation or heating controls. Small and medium-sized businesses, social enterprises and charities in East Sussex (excluding Brighton & Hove) can apply.
Camden Climate Fund
The Camden Climate Fund can provide up to 50% of costs to reduce the carbon used in our homes, businesses and community spaces. The advice is to apply ASAP.
Big Lottery Fund
Funding pots for community groups.
Charities Aid Foundation
CAF offers a variety of banking, investment and loan solutions as well as grants for a variety of causes.
Community foundations manage funds from individuals, businesses and other donors who want to support causes in their local area.
Grants to fund support, education and research into fuel poverty of energy efficiency improvements to the local housing stock.
Esmee Fairbairn Foundation
Finance for community energy (grants and social impact loans).
Friends Provident Foundation
Grants for projects that address the issues of economic resilience and systems change in different ways.
Grants for projects aiming to make a difference to a local area with clear consideration given to the environmental and social impact of the project. Further details on the Local Community Projects Fund here and Environmental grants here.
Joseph Rowntree Foundation
Grants for projects working to tackle climate change, poverty and rebalancing local economies, resources and resilience.
Grants to fund community renewable energy and social enterprise projects.
Power to Change
Grants to help new and existing community businesses grow and become more sustainable. The Community Business Fund awards grants between £50k and £300k to established community businesses that need funding for a business development project to make their organisation more financially sustainable. So far they have funded energy efficiency measures for community buildings owned by the applicant organisation with the aim of improving financial viability.
Sainsburys Family Charitable Trust
Grants to fund registered charities or activities with clearly defined charitable purposes. For further details please see here.
Social and Sustainable Capital (SASC)
Simple and flexible financing for charities and social enterprises.
Loans to charities, community groups and social enterprises (£50k - £2.5m) for capital projects.
Finance for community groups. Loans from £10k - £75k are available, but can increase to £150k.
Capital revolving loan fund for RE projects (100kW - 5MW) (set up and overseen by BIS). Loans are available for development costs (feasibility), bridging loans (planning stage to construction) and short-term loans to cover construction.
Ethex has a track record of successfully raising more than £70m for over 70 enterprises from a committed network of more than 15,000 people who want to use their money to create impact. Over £50m of the funding raised has been for community energy projects
Finance and support for community energy.
- Community Energy Fund: draws on a credit facility from Big Society Capital (social impact fund), which can be augmented through donations.
- Bridge Finance: £30 million revolving loan facility from BSC to support large-scale community energy projects.
Thrive Renewables Community Bridge Financial Model
Thrive Renewables will finance community energy organisations to help them acquire renewable energy technology. They have already supported communities with a £12 million investment into wind and solar projects across the UK. They can structure their investment as pure acquisition, joint ventures or mezzanine loans also.
Triodos Bank UK
Triodos Bank UK has a long track record of financing community energy projects. They provide loans for project construction, operations and/or re-financing with facilities from £ 1 million up to £20 million. Triodos also helps community energy groups raise capital through Triodos Bank crowdfunding platform, they can raise amounts from £400,000 to £5m.
Younity Community Energy Kickstart
Launched in collaboration with Octopus Energy and Midcounties Co-Operative, Community Energy Kickstart is here to help plug the funding gap for community energy projects. With £1.5m of funds available, this bridging loan is for projects across England, Scotland and Wales who are building and managing local renewable generation to benefit the local community while creating more cheap, green energy.