Environmental Feature — 08 July 2018

Whittington Primary School is looking forward to big savings on electricity bills thanks to new energy-saving LED lighting.

Whittington Primary School headteacher Nichola Leeson with a group of children who are part of the School’s Eco Council in front of one of the new energy-saving LED lights.

The school worked with energy-saving specialist company SaveMoneyCutCarbon, which fully managed the whole project, from planning to finance and installation.

The new LED lighting reduces energy costs by 68.3% with savings of £3,449.11 a year and the interest-free funding secured will be paid for through the savings made annually.

As well as cutting bills, the school wanted to reduce its energy-related carbon emissions to benefit the environment and reduce costs involved in replacing and fixing broken lamps and fittings. Both will be achieved with the LED lighting.

The school’s “carbon footprint” for lighting has been reduced by two-thirds and the LED lighting has a long working life of around 50,000 hours so maintenance costs will be considerably less.

SaveMoneyCutCarbon carried out a detailed survey to assess what annual savings would be gained by fitting LED lighting in the classrooms and other parts of the school, identifying further savings through heating controls and insulation.

The experienced SaveMoneyCutCarbon team, all fully DBS-checked, handled the seven-day project from start to finish, including survey, specification, installation and testing.

SaveMoneyCutCarbon used its expert knowledge to manage the complex Salix Finance funding application on behalf of the school, securing an interest-free loan to cover project costs, with repayments covered by savings made in electricity bills.

The school was keen to make savings as quickly as possible and the team worked around the school timetable, fitting the LED lighting during the school holidays to avoid any disruption to class activities.

It replaced 464 lights and fittings at the school with quality LED equivalents, including panels, linear battens, lamps, tubes and bulkheads.

LED was chosen as a light source because it offers excellent energy efficiency compared with fluorescent and halogen light. It also delivers high reliability and light quality, lasting for between 40,000 to 50,000 hours of continuous usage, which helps to cut maintenance costs.

The LED lighting retrofit removed fluorescent tubes that generally only last 5,000 hours with the light quality degrading badly well before final failure.

Every light is fully supported with a no-quibble, five-year manufacturers’ warranty.

Funding was also secured for insulation to the mobile classroom ceiling and thermostat controls to improve the environment in those rooms.

The school also took advantage of SaveMoneyCutCarbon’s energy brokerage service to find a cheaper supplier and further cut costs.

Emily McDonough, Midlands regional sales manager, SaveMoneyCutCarbon said: “I live locally and I’m really pleased that we were able to help the school make some great and ongoing savings to ease pressure on budgets. Our extensive experience in the school sector means that we can provide the best service, including pain-free funding.

“It’s so important now for schools to find ways to manage their operating costs as the funding squeeze continues and every school with older lighting would definitely benefit from an LED upgrade.”

Steve Kirk, Whittington Primary School site and finance manager said: “SaveMoneyCutCarbon have assisted our school with a detailed energy survey encompassing lighting, heating, insulation and energy tariffs, as well as helping us apply for and obtain funding support. The new LED lighting is a huge improvement on the older, fluorescent fittings and has transformed the classroom learning environment.

“It will provide significant savings on our electricity bill as well as being more reliable and maintenance free. The project also helps us to be more eco-friendly and sits alongside a number of other schemes in school that help reduce our carbon footprint.

“The service from SaveMoneyCutCarbon was excellent and the installation was very professionally handled and completed on time and within budget.”

The larger than average rural school on the outskirts of Whittington Village and two miles from Lichfield teaches pupils aged three to 11.

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