Dorset’s biggest private landlord has installed more than 200 solar panels on the roof of its HQ – allowing it to charge its new electric car.
DWP Housing Partnership has invested £60,000 in the photovoltaic (PV) panels on its premises in St Clements Road, Boscombe, Bournemouth.
The 50kw system converts sun into electricity and provides plenty of power for the 30 or 40 people who work in the building at any one time and it also means that the first of the partnership’s electric car can be charged directly from the sunlight hitting the roof.
The Nissan Leaf has proved a success and is used daily by rent consultants, says the landlord.
When fully charged it has a range of 124 miles, although typically it does half that in a day.
Steve Wells (pictured), from DWP Housing Partnership, said: “We anticipate that the outlay for the solar panels will be recouped within six years.
“When the sun is shining the panels provide enough power for our needs and any excess is sold back to the national grid.
“We are also able to charge our electric car, which we’ve been very impressed with.
“We took it on for a trial period and were so pleased with it we’ve kept it and aim to add more electric vehicles in the future.
“It costs just two pence per mile to run compared with 14 or 15 pence for a normal, petrol-powered car.”
Tim Bamford of Savills Energy Team in Wimborne, who consulted on the installation, said: “With energy prices predicted to rise significantly over the next 10 years, solar PV offers an excellent opportunity to mitigate these ever increasing costs.
“We were delighted to work with DWP Housing Partnership on this initiative from conception right through to the installation and completion.”