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Date published: 23rd March 2024

Victory Swim and Fitness Centre will be the next leisure centre in North Norfolk to have solar paneling (PVs) installed, following confirmation of a grant from Sport England.

£174,725 was awarded to North Norfolk District Council from the Government’s Swimming Pool Support Fund (SPSF), a capital works fund stream available to local authorities to improve the energy efficiency of public leisure centres.

The aims of the fund are to reduce the energy consumption of facilities and support a transition to environmental and financial sustainability.

Energy generated at Victory will help reduce reliance on the national grid and lower running costs for the facility, which is run by the Council’s leisure operator, Everyone Active.

Cllr. Adam Varley, portfolio holder for Net Zero and Climate said:

“This is fantastic news and the funding is welcome as we continue to decarbonise our estate.

In bringing renewable solar energy to Victory [Swim and Fitness Centre] we will be able to generate our own power and reduce the carbon footprint of the facility.”

Stuart Jardine, Everyone Active’s contract manager, said:

“It is great news that these investments will reduce the centre’s carbon footprint going forward. Everyone Active is proud to work alongside the Council, as part of our Net Zero Strategy, to help achieve our company’s Net Zero ambitions.”

As part of the Council’s Net Zero aims, a programme of decarbonisation and investment in renewable energies has taken place across its estate.

Recent capital projects to decarbonise include around £500,000 for the development of a solar car port at The Reef.

The Council’s leisure centres are some of the biggest energy users in our estate – it is important to minimise their running costs as well as reducing their carbon emissions which make a considerable impact on the Council’s carbon footprint.

Initial scheme plans are for a 240 kWp capacity system with an estimated annual generation of 188,000 kWh, saving 35 tCO2 a year.

Like the solar carport at The Reef, these solar panels are expected to produce about a third of the centre’s annual electricity demand.

The Council recently received confirmation of funding from the Department of Levelling Up, Housing & Communities (DLUHC), where £9.875m will be invested into building new facilities for the Fakenham Leisure & Sports Hub Facility.

As part of the Levelling Up investment into the facility at Fakenham, an allocation has been made for carbon reduction measures.

Last updated: 23rd March 2024