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Solar Energy Powers Colston’s Girls’ School’s Future


One of Bristol’s leading schools is powering into the future with the help of new solar panels partly funded by the ScottishPower Green Energy Trust.

Over the past two years, Colston’s Girls’ School, in Cheltenham Road, has been pioneering new and innovative ways to conserve energy and reduce its carbon footprint.

This week Dr Nick Banks from Sustain joined Head Mistress Lesley Ann Jones to cut the ribbon and launch the £30,000 panels which were also funded by the Carbon Trust.

Alison McKean, Head of Environment, at ScottishPower said:

“The Green Energy Trust is delighted to contribute towards the school’s solar panels. It is really important that children of a young age learn as much as they can about renewable energy.
It's fantastic that Colston’s Girl School is committed to becoming energy efficient and has proved this by installing the solar energy panels.”

Buildings Manager for the school John Manley explained that the panels would have educational as well as practical uses.

“The control panel gives a good deal of information including how much power the panels have generated and how much carbon dioxide has been saved,” said Mr Manley.

“The students can use these statistics to calculate how much energy the school is using and where savings can be made.”

During the school holidays, the panels will continue to convert the sun’s energy into power, but this will be sold back into the National Grid, generating funds for the school and helping to make the UK energy supply greener.

ScottishPower’s Green Energy Trust which contributed over £13,000 to the solar panels will be celebrating its 10th Birthday this year. Since the trust began it has funded £936,940 to 91 projects. The trust is an independently registered charity helping to fund community based renewable energy projects all over the UK.

Colston’s Girls’ School (CGS) has already established a range of sustainability initiatives including a comprehensive recycling policy and a commitment to using locally-produced, organic ingredients in its kitchens wherever feasible.

Every class has its own ‘Green’ representative and the girls are encouraged to put forward their own ideas for saving carbon.

History and RE teacher Angela Douglas has been appointed Green Co-ordinator to oversee the various projects as the school works towards Green Flag status.

CGS is set to achieve Academy status in September this year and green issues will be taken into consideration when considering proposals for new building projects.

“This is a very exciting time for the school, but as we move forward we are 100 per cent committed to being as environmentally-friendly as possible,” said Mrs Jones.


  • The ScottishPower Green Energy Trust was founded in 1998 as an independent charitable trust to support the development of new renewable energy sources in the UK – helping to reduce the reliance on fossil fuels and combat climate change.
  • Funded entirely by ScottishPower’s Green Energy Fund customers – with trustees representing the UK Energy Research Centre, Borders Forest Trust and Energy Action Scotland – the Trust offers grants to a wide range of projects that will increase the use and knowledge of renewable energy.