A Nottingham business park is on target to become one of the first in Britain to supply the power needs of all its tenants from its own three-acre solar farm.
The massive array of 2,000 solar panels has been installed at Ransom Wood Business Park in Mansfield and is capable of generating up to 450 kW of power, enough electricity for all 60 businesses on the park.
“We believe we are leading the way in environmental management and business support,” said James Cannon, a director of the 110,000 sq ft park’s managing company Ransom Wood Estates. As well as the site’s 75,000 sq ft of office space Ransom Wood also has a restaurant and staff nursery — requiring up to 400 kW when all are fully working.
“Our tenants will be able to power their businesses in the knowledge that no fossil fuels are being used to keep them running,” he added. “And with the solar farm on-line, we will be able to run the business park in a self-sustaining way when it comes to energy use, reducing carbon emissions by thousands of tonnes each year.”
His brother and fellow director, Charles Cannon, said the decision to set up the £660,000 solar farm was “as much about ethics as it was economics and environmental management … It was all about creating the right space in which people can work without the added stress factors of living out of an office”.
Unlike modern business parks, Ransom Wood has converted and upgraded old early 20th century buildings instead of erecting purpose built ones. “Having a base at Ransom Wood means working in a beautiful location that changes through the seasons, one that sustains the flora and fauna of the area and in return provides an inspiring and creative place in which people can run a business,” added Charles Cannon.
The solar project is being managed by specialist renewable energy provider TH White. Its energy division general manager is Alex Lockton. “This move by Ransom Wood Business Park to become self-sustaining using solar power is indicative of the way the market is changing,” he commented.
“Businesses are starting to see the commercial benefits, as well as the ethical benefits, of using this model and we expect to see other organisations including universities, other science and business parks and stand-alone businesses following suit.”
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