Seven Borough and District Coundils (Northampton BC, Daventry DC, Ketterring BC, South Northampton Council, Corby BC and Wellingborough) in Northamptonshire formed a group called the Northamptonshire Energy Efficiency Partnership (NHEEP). The group also includes representatives from Powergen, British Gas, Warm Front, Ideal Boilers, Worcester-Bosch Boilers, Plumb Center and the Leicestershire/Northants Energy Efficiency Advice Centre.
The partnership enables:
- Exchange of information and sharing of good practice
- Promotion and assistance with implementation of HECA (Home Energy Conservation Association/ Home Energy Conservation Act 1995) strategies
- Increased opportunity of obtaining funding
- Development of countywide energy efficiency initiatives including bulk purchase discount scheme supplying condensing gas and energy efficient oil boilers and an Able to Pay insulation scheme
Members of NHEEP decided that they would like to start some countywide work with schools. A sub-committee was formed to look at this area of work. The sub-committee researched school projects in other parts of the country and found details of the Hampshire Solar Car Challenge. The sub-committee put forward the idea of setting up a Northamptonshire Solar Car Challenge to NHEEP and it was approved. Once the idea of a Northamptonshire Solar Car Challenge had been approved members of the subcommittee contacted other agencies to see if they would like to work in partnership on the project and Northamptonshire Education and Business Link, the Environment Agency and British Gas agreed.
The purpose of the Solar Car Challenge was to provide an enjoyable way for children to learn about sustainability and environmental issues. The challenge was targeted at the 8- 11 year olds (Key Stage II) and integrates into the National Curriculum requirements on sustainability, environmental education and design and technology for this age group. It also allows the children to use their creative and engineering skills and will increase their team-working and problem solving skills.