Get fund-ready for Community Energy Fund


Blog written by Freddie Ashford from Hydrock 

The Community Energy Fund gives local communities the opportunity to invest in and develop clean energy projects to benefit their local area. 

It’s been designed to help stakeholders to finance the crucial steps, but often hidden costs, behind making a successful investment in clean energy. These are most notably, upfront feasibility studies, planning support and design. 

With our combined expertise in both designing renewable energy schemes and engineering, Hydrock has a well-established track record of working on the viability, financial modelling, and engineering design of clean energy schemes. This ranges from local community schemes, for example serving a leisure centre or sports facility, or providing resilience and lower energy costs to tenants on business and industrial parks.

In our experience, success is measured in terms of achieving grid connection, stakeholder engagement and pay-back, and that comes from a robust and early approach to information gathering so that the business case is sound and clear.

Key advice - invest in technology feasibility studies 

The importance of the CEF is that it gives qualifying organisations the finance to access upfront technical advice and professional services to help get a proposed scheme fit for purpose and to reach its full potential.

It's this expert advice that will help determine the viability and practicality of projects, and shape how they can progress to implementation.  

Community groups should invest in exploring how different technologies will work. This helps decide what is the best route to take to create affordable, local clean energy. 

Nationwide, so much can be learnt from the projects supported by this fund, which can enable technologies and processes to be scaled up and repeated.  

The CEF will enable more real-world examples of clean energy projects to come forward from which we can all draw knowledge and intelligence as we continue to drive improvements in this crucial decade to transition our energy provision to low-carbon solutions. 

Make sure you are fund-ready 

Being 'fund-ready' means having: 

  • A business case that demonstrates the local community benefit 
  • Confidence that the scheme you present is achievable 
  • A technology partner who is willing to be your partner and collaborate with your organisation or group 

Our advice is to aim to hold on to the ownership of projects to create lasting value. This will be increasingly significant in the future as renewable energy projects, buildings and sites become more interconnected. 

Hydrock as your energy and engineering partner 

With coverage across the UK, Hydrock is an energy, engineering and sustainability consultancy with the technical and policy knowledge to help clients navigate the ever-evolving energy and sustainability landscape.  

To meet net zero targets, overcome concerns around energy security, address grid constraints and respond to rising energy costs, investing in renewable energy and storage is a proven strategy that supports communities and unlocks development.  

At Hydrock, we’re there for our clients from initial strategic thinking to overseeing the construction and operation of a clean, renewable energy, storage or EV charging scheme. Our services include: 

  • Energy strategy and market forecasting 
  • Site-wide feasibility studies 
  • Prioritising across a portfolio 
  • Renewable technology assessments 
  • Financial modelling of capital investment and returns 
  • Utility appraisals and support for grid connections 
  • Planning support 
  • Scheme design, procurement and installation 
  • Battery storage feasibility, modelling and planning support 
  • Integrated modelling of renewables, eMobility, storage and smart energy 

Through the whole process, Hydrock's engineering capability will also help with: 

  • Understanding ground conditions 
  • Drainage strategies and flood risk assessments 
  • Access statements 
  • Noise studies 
  • Fire risk strategies 
  • Structural, civil and MEP service design 


Further information on our specific energy, climate and sustainability consulting services can be found here:  Smart Energy and Sustainability | Hydrock 


To discover more about Hydrock as a business, click here: Hydrock | Integrated engineering design, energy & sustainability

To get in touch, contact either Ben Bowler at: OR Freddie Ashford at: