FRECo is a small but important step towards a secure energy future for Frome. We enable the local community to invest in clean, renewable energy through community shares. We are a not for profit, democratic organisation; any surplus is reinvested in a community fund to support energy saving projects. Recent projects include: Frome Open Homes and Switch and Save. FRECo was founded through Sustainable Frome and we are working in partnership with Bath and West Community Energy and Mongoose Energy.
Anna Francis – Chair
Anna has over 15 years experience working in the sustainability sector and is an experienced Director and project manager. Anna is a founding Director of FRECo and secured a range of external grants to run projects around fuel poverty, Open Homes, energy efficiency, renewables and community engagement. She also managed FRECo’s first share issue in 2015 which raised £280,000 in four days and was hugely over subscribed.
She has raised almost £2m in the past few years for community projects and has set up successful social enterprises such as Sutton Community Farm and SHARE the UK’s first share shop. She also works for Frome Town Council as their Resilience Manager and the council has been awarded numerous awards for this work around energy, including Regen South West’s Most Proactive Public Sector Body. She is a chartered Environmentalist, an Energy Performance Assessor and previously a Code for Sustainable Homes Assessor. She has is passionate about community energy and the transition towards a low carbon community.
Peter Macfadyen – Director
Peter Macfadyen founded Sustainable Frome in 2006 as a vehicle to promote ‘green’ ideas and support those in the community promoting ways to reduce our carbon footprint. In 2011 he became a town councilor in Frome and has led a range of initiatives to ensure the town takes every opportunity available in these areas – recognised in Frome Council recently winning the South West Green Energy Award. Peter has had personal experience of owning and running solar systems for over 30 years.
Within Frome he has been a trustee and director of a number of charities and community groups engaged in carrying out services and in both raising and distributing funds. In parallel Peter co-directs a funeral company and works has an international development consultant for 25 years. Overall, a collection of activity which provides considerable experience in dealing with both people and finance.
Pete Capener – Director
Pete has worked in the sustainable energy field for nearly 30 years. He led the initial growth of the Centre for Sustainable Energy in Bristol where he was chief executive. As well as working at a local level with communities, Pete has been involved in many national community support initiatives. He is chair of Bath and West Community Energy and Director of Community Energy England, is a member of the ministerial Community Energy Contact Group and has been advising government during the development of the first ever UK Community Energy Strategy. He was recently awarded an MBE for ‘services to sustainable energy’ and was voted Community Energy Leader of the Year at the UK Community Energy awards.
Peter Andrews – Director
Peter was a founder director of BWCE and has been closely involved in its successful fundraising activities and as well as those of Wiltshire Wildlife Community Energy and Low Carbon Gordano. He has also been involved in many community and sustainability projects. He is currently a sustainability advisor to the B&NES Local Strategic Partnership and runs a small publishing company eco-logic books.
Alison Turnbull – Director
Alison Turnbull is one of Mongoose Energy’s main project developers. She has worked in the renewable energy industry for 20 years. Alison was recently responsible for overseeing the project development on The Mead Primary School – solar 49kW, Peasedown St John Primary School – solar 38kW and the Chelworth Solar Array – 1MW solar.
Lizzie Boyle – Director
Also known as Liz Warren, Lizzie Boyle has been working in the sustainable energy sector since 2002 and has a good knowledge of the energy sector and the role that communities can play. She helped
Community Energy England to develop its online resource hub, which provides great information and inspiration to communities as they create and manage energy projects. She has provided support to over 50 local authorities across the UK, helping them to work with schools, frontline workers, communities and businesses to reduce energy use, improve energy efficiency and install new energy systems.
Since 2004, she has been a Director of SE2 Limited, a consultancy operating in the energy sector. She has an MBA from Edinburgh Business School, which gives her a good grounding in all aspects of business management.
Following a financial training, Nick has had a career in commerce based in London in largely financial management roles, covering manufacture, retailing and property investment and development. He now holds a clutch of non-executive roles in not-for-profit organisations ranging from musical education through to an NHS Foundation Trust hospital. He also does training and mentoring of lawyers who with to develop their financial skills. Nick’s interest in FRECo is based on its local nature, an interest in renewable energy and in wanting to help make FRECo a model for others to follow.
Simon strongly believes in FRECo’s aims and wants to play an active role in helping FRECO achieve its objectives, of creating a zero-carbon Frome and providing a secure energy future for the local community.
Simon has worked in the renewables industry for over 10 years, managing large portfolios of renewable generators and working in renewable project development. This has enabled him to develop a detailed understanding of different types of renewable energy projects, as well as the various legislative and infrastructure requirements that underpin them.
Throughout his career in renewables he has worked with a number of community energy projects, from street level to large commercial, and has seen the important role that these projects play in providing a benefit to the the communities they are part of (both environmental and social). Through this he has developed a real passion for community energy, and is committed ensuring that more projects can be delivered here in Frome.
FRECo is working closely with Bath & West Community Energy (BWCE) and benefiting from their expertise in clean energy installations. BWCE was set up in 2010 to pursue its own projects and lend its expertise to other Community Benefit Societies. To date, over its own and supported projects, BWCE has raised over £10 million and installed over 6MW of solar power. Further details about BWCE can be found at bwce.coop