Cheltenham Town FC boasts only solar-powered stadium in League One

Cheltenham Town Football Club is the first club in League One to power a stadium on solar energy, all thanks to an installation by Stonehouse-based Cotswold Energy Group.

By Sarah Kent  |  Published

When it comes to sporting endeavours, Gloucestershire is one of the most prolific counties in the country, with some of the strongest clubs and sportspeople in the world residing in the West Country. 

And now one of Gloucestershire's very own football clubs has become the first in its league to convert to renewable power, with Cheltenham Town Football Club's stadium now powered by solar energy. 

Working hard towards establishing a sustainable and eco-conscious future for the club, the local community and the environment, Cheltenham Town FC contracted Stonehouse-based Cotswold Energy Group to design and install the massive solar panel project, with the work taking a year of planning and eight weeks of building and installation.

And with 213 high-performance solar photovoltaic panels on top of both the Colin Farmer and Hazlewoods Stands, the installation at the Robins' stadium is also the largest solar rooftop project in Cheltenham.

The panels face a sun-soaked southerly and easterly direction for maximum absorption during the sunniest hours and they have capacity to generate up to 77 MWh of energy each year. This means an estimated reduction of 20 tonnes of carbon emissions over the installation’s 25-year lifetime, which is equivalent to planting 3,864 trees — that's three football pitches worth of woodland!

Paul Bence, commercial director at Cheltenham Town FC, said: 'This is an important first step in creating a more sustainable, lower emissions football club. For us, it is about investing wisely in a greener future that will benefit the environment, the club and the local community.

'We owe a lot of thanks to the people who have made this project possible. We hope it will be an inspiration for other clubs, and for more initiatives in Cheltenham and the wider Gloucestershire area.'

The solar panels will provide over 25 per cent of the stadium’s power and, with the integration of other energy-saving initiatives such as LED floodlights, 30 per cent of the stadium's huge energy usage is set to be powered by renewable energy, with savings of around £21,000 a year in electricity costs.

Jon Bonnar, managing director of Cotswold Energy Group, said: 'Cheltenham’s football stadium is well positioned for direct sunlight, presenting an ideal location for harnessing solar power. Installing this solar array is a simple yet efficient step in helping the football club to contribute to the UK’s net zero targets.

'As a business, it’s a pleasure to support a source of local pride in its transition to renewable energy and contribute to making Gloucestershire a greener region.'

In partnership with Cotswold Energy Group  |

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