Worcestershire BEEP programme could help businesses with grants of thousands for greener working practices

Worcestershire’s small and medium size businesses could be missing out on grants of up to £20,000 to help improve energy efficiency, reduce running costs and improve environmental credentials.

The Business Energy Efficiency Programme, which has been rolled out across Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Telford and Wrekin has already helped several businesses including Central Profiles, a manufacturer based in Kidderminster.

Central Profiles applied for the grant and initial assessment via Worcestershire Business Central. The Business Energy Efficiency Programme, or BEEP as it is more commonly known, offered the company around £10,000 for a project which would include replacement of LED lighting, a brand new compressor and energy efficient equipment.

Jenny Flory, Director from Central Profiles said: “The application for the whole process ran smoothly. The BEEP programme run by Worcestershire County Council and its partners, is a great chance to look into your green credentials and running costs. Initially there is a 60 per cent outlay but having replaced old equipment, we predict that the initial costs will be reaped back in three to four years.”

“Our old compressor was much bigger than the new one we have. Due to its age for instance, it started to use too much electricity which was impacting on our carbon footprint. The grant has helped us to revaluate our whole green offering – this meant the difference between replacing the equipment now or in ten years’ time.”

In addition to a new compressor, LED lighting was installed into the Central Profiles factory. The lighting was a much needed improvement to the dimly lit and outdated lighting that had been used before.

A brand new finishing degreaser was also purchased to help improve with energy efficiency of production.

But what of the process of applying for a grant, Jenny explained: “Once the survey with BEEP was carried out it was found that all of the elements mentioned were found to be carbon inefficient. A significant carbon saving was found to be had should we apply for the grant and so we did. We are very pleased with both the recommendations from BEEP and the level from customer service from Worcestershire County Council. I would urge anyone thinking of applying for the grants to do so – there really isn’t anything to lose.”

In all the improvements took three months to implement. This included ordering, delivery and instalment of machinery.

Grants can be applied to any of the following: Lighting, Compressors, Insulation, Fast Acting Warehouse doors, Renewable technologies, Refrigeration, Energy storage, Voltage optimisation, Energy management, Behavioural change programmes, Feasibility studies, Heating & boilers and more.

To register for an energy efficiency assessment or for more information visit the Worcestershire Business Central website or call 01905 677888

The Business Energy Efficiency Programme is part-financed by the England European Regional Development Fund Programme as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.

Worcestershire County Council along with its partners Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce, Shropshire Chamber of Commerce, Herefordshire Council, Telford & Wrekin Council and the Worcestershire Districts Councils were awarded £1.45 million funding from the Department for Communities and Local Government’s European Regional Development Fund to help small and medium-sized businesses.