Taverham VC CE Junior School in Norfolk had recognised the need for a lighting upgrade for some years but funding was not available.
The aged and inefficient lighting was further identified as a major issue in a full buildings survey conducted in April (2016).
The larger than average junior school, with 442 pupils, was built in 1959 and many of the lighting fittings dated back to that time, with building additions in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and 2002.
Light quality was poor and there were ongoing maintenance costs as tubes and other lights failed regularly.
Headteacher Paul Stanley was introduced to energy efficiency experts SaveMoneyCutCarbon through the Norwich Diocese and Anglian Water Business account manager Neil King.
Discussions identified the urgent need for an LED lighting upgrade and the main issue of capital cost. SaveMoneyCutCarbon provided the solution – 100% interest-free funding via Salix Finance, and a fully-managed LED lighting retrofit project with loan repayments covered by the savings on energy costs.
SaveMoneyCutCarbon used its expertise within the education sector to swiftly survey and specify replacement LED lighting, managing the entire process of installation and testing. Equally important, SMCC completed the complex Salix funding application on behalf of the school and at no cost to them.
SaveMoneyCutCarbon’s technical team specified quality LED lighting because of its low energy use, high reliability and exceptional working life of at least 50,000 hours. In contrast, incandescent light bulbs typically last around 1,000 hours and fluorescents are good for roughly 5,000 hours before light degradation occurs.
LEDs are also low maintenance, an additional benefit to the school as the lights should not need replacing for a decade or more while finally resolving the issue of failed tubes and other fittings. All of the lighting is fully supported with a no quibble manufacturers’ warranty.
There are also benefits for staff and for children’s learning through better lighting quality.
There was a need for swift action to:
- improve lighting quality as many areas of the school were inadequate
- make substantial ongoing savings on lighting bills
- improve the school’s sustainability framework by reducing carbon emissions.
The SaveMoneyCutCarbon Field Services team replaced 425 lights, including panels, tubes, 2D fittings and floodlights across the whole school.
The installation team – all fully DBS checked – worked closely with the school to minimise disruption, working nights and finishing over the bank holiday. The team would typically commence work each day at 4pm and work through the night.
Paul Stanley, Headteacher says that “when I first heard that we could have all of our ancient, poor-quality, ineffective and inefficient lighting replaced with energy-saving bulbs and LEDs, effectively free of charge I was incredulous. It all sounded too good to be true and I wanted to know what the catch was.
“The truth is that there is no catch! SaveMoneyCutCarbon outlined clearly and precisely how the savings would be made and the lighting options for the school.
“The repayments on the interest-free capital loan we have been given to pay for the lighting refit will be paid by the savings in our electricity bills which, along with our carbon footprint, will be reduced by a massive 63%.
“The refit was carried out over a working week. The SaveMoneyCutCarbon Field Services Team worked after school each day and through the night on three occasions. The disruption was minimal, and non-existent as far as pupils are concerned. Most staff didn’t even realise the work was going on!
“When there were a couple of minor issues, our Site Manager was able to resolve these with a phone call or email to SaveMoneyCutCarbon.
“Much to my relief, there were not huge amounts of forms and paperwork for me to complete; everything is very straightforward. We had named contacts at both SaveMoneyCutCarbon and Salix who were easily accessible and communication was prompt and easy.”
“I am convinced that the brighter, better-quality and more natural looking lighting will have positive benefits for our staff and pupils’ well-being, as well as pupils’ learning progress, which research shows can be improved by 21% with effective lighting in classrooms.** “I would wholeheartedly recommend any school getting involved in this project. The improvements in lighting and its impact on learning and well-being are reason enough; to know that we will also be saving money and doing our bit to help the planet is also a huge positive."
“All schools are facing increased financial pressures and many are struggling with old, inefficient lighting. With our solution, they can vastly improve quality of light while saving money and benefiting the environment.”
“We work constantly to save our customers money and make sustainable energy savings; adding value and ensuring leading customer service at every stage. “Our partnership with SaveMoneyCutCarbon is a perfect example of this approach in action.”
- The LED retrofit will reduce lighting bills by £3,830 a year
- Carbon footprint will be cut by 63%
- Full Salix financing at zero interest means the project should be self-financing over an eight-year period
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