Solar panels fitted to 2,000 Sunderland Gentoo homes

Allan Thompson celebrates 2000th PV Installation with gentoo customer Joyce Cowie.
Allan Thompson celebrates 2000th PV Installation with gentoo customer Joyce Cowie.
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THE future is bright for Gentoo tenants after the housing group installed solar panels to its 2,000th home.

The milestone marks the latest stage in Gentoo’s ongoing photovoltaic (PV) retrofitting programme, which sees customers pay a £1 weekly maintenance charge in return for savings on their energy bills.

More than £8million has been invested and the average saving on fuel bills is 22 per cent.

Washington couple Victor and Joyce Cowie were the 2,000th household to take up the offer.

Victor said: “We are delighted with the work that has been done to our home. We know people who’ve had PV panels fitted, so sought lots of advice beforehand and they came well recommended.

“The potential cost savings were a big enough incentive for us to take up the offer and paying £1 per week is next to nothing considering the amount of money we should save on our energy bill.”

Gentoo uses its own Microgeneration Certification Scheme-accredited team to install PVs from its own subsidiary manufacturer Romag.

Allan Thompson, managing director of Gentoo Construction, said: “This is the second phase of our PV retrofit programme and, as the number of installations we have made to date shows, the programme has proven very popular among customers.

“Gentoo’s mission is to reinvest the wealth it generates back into the communities it serves and we will do the same with this project. The income Gentoo will receive as a result of PV installations made to date will be ring fenced to install more PV systems to more homes.”

About 20,000 PV panels have now been fitted. As well as existing homes, Gentoo is incorporating the technology into its new builds and offering the service to external clients.