Sleaford school vies for slice of £300k for sports hall lighting

The sports hall at St George's Academy.
The sports hall at St George's Academy.

A school in Sleaford is in the running for a share of £300,000 to fund eco-friendly improvements on its grounds – but will need the public’s help first if it is to receive the sum.

St George’s Academy is one of 150 community energy projects that has been shortlisted for an award from the M&S Energy Community Fund.

The fund was launched by M&S Energy in May, offering up to up to £300,000 for community renewable energy projects and technologies across the UK.

Any not for profit organisation wanting to take steps to provide environmentally friendly benefits to the community could apply.

Those shortlisted have two shots at receiving funding (St George’s is looking for £11,500).

First, M&S Energy will be presenting regional funding awards for projects which require a maximum of £12,000 as determined by a public vote.

Second, it will be awarding sums of at least £20,000 to the most innovative or inspiring projects selected from those that do not win through the public vote in what it calls ‘Judges’ Prizes’.

St George’s Academy is appealing for people to back it in the public vote. Its project would see it upgrade lighting in the sports halls at its Sleaford campus.

A spokesman for the school said: “We need to secure as many votes as possible from the local community between now and October 20th to be in with a chance of securing the funding for this vital project.

“The project will enable the academy to replace existing lighting with energy efficient LED lighting that will increase the lumen in the sports halls; improving visibility for students when taking exams and both students and clubs when participating in sporting activities.

“It will also bring about a reduction in the academy energy bills; increasing funding available to invest in education and further improvements to facilities for students.”

In order to get this far, St George’s Academy had to impress a panel including M&S, SSE (M&S Energy’s supplier), the renewable energy body Energyshare and an independent judge.

Projects were considered on their social and environmental impact and such criteria as: having a clear business case that gives value for money, an engaged and supportive community, and a measurable community benefit.

Winners in this next stage will be announced in November. 

To support St George’s Academy in its funding bid, vote online at www.mandsenergyfund.com/projects/st-georges-academy-led-upgrades