Energy resilience, affordability and sustainability top of the agenda for business leaders

March 14, 2023

Delegates at a special Business Energy Business Breakfast have learned about the steps they need to take to help future-proof their energy supplies and manage costs.

Shropshire Council and Marches LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership) hosted a two-panel breakfast meeting, where experts shared practical information and guidance on sustainable energy solutions, funding sources and energy and environmental auditing.

Ian Nellins, Shropshire Council cabinet member for climate change, environment and transport, said “With the cost of living crisis rising and energy bills increasing, we wanted to bring Shropshire business leaders together to help provide expert advice on a range of energy-saving opportunities that SMEs can implement to reduce usage.

“It can be a daunting prospect for business owners who are ‘busy with their day jobs’ to even begin gathering and understanding all the information surrounding energy supply and sustainability, so by bringing experts together to share knowledge we hope to have made the first steps a little but easier to take.

“It is clear the market is changing and we need to be looking at solutions that provide cost effective energy resilience and the associated manufacturing and skills they require.”

Tim Yair, regional senior energy projects officer for Marches LEP, also advised on sources of funding and grants available to businesses to help future-proof energy supply and costs.

He said “Marches LEP is working closely with businesses to help them make the most efficient use of energy and drive down costs. We’re delighted to have partnered with Shropshire Council for this event, which offered delegates practical advice on how to combat rising energy bills and also help meet net zero targets.”

AceOn and the Big Solar Co-op addressed issues of sustainability and resilience in the first discussion. The AceOn Group is a nationally-respected energy storage and battery company and is passionate about helping the country meet Net Zero Carbon ambitions and targets.

The Big Solar Co-op aims to unlock the huge potential of rooftop solar on community and commercial buildings across the UK.  Its first tranche of installations include a food processing plant in Tenbury Wells and a doctors surgery in Birmingham.

The second panel showcased local companies who have maximised their energy savings by implementing best practices.

The leading home safety company, Aico, demonstrated positive actions that have helped make its state-of-the-art premises in Oswestry energy efficient. Examples included installing solar panels, commissioning energy audits and installing EV chargers on site.

Cool Shropshire and Telford, a partnership between Shropshire Council, Telford & Wrekin Council and environmental consultants E4environment Ltd, advised delegates on the potential to save money by becoming more energy and resource efficient, and increasing resilience against supply chain shocks and the effects of climate change.

A full recording of the event can be viewed at:

Back to top arrow

The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership has now ceased trading and transferred all its functions to Shropshire Council working with Telford & Wrekin Council and Herefordshire Council, in line with the UK Government's plans for devolution.

The Marches LEP was established in 2011 and hands over an impressive legacy from its 13-year life. In that time the LEP invested over £196m in projects across the Marches, securing in excess of £100m of match funding and supported more than 66,000 business interactions.

The schemes supported have made tangible differences to local communities, increasing skills, creating jobs and improving the physical appearance of many towns.

We would like to thank all the LEP Board Members who have given their time freely over the life of the LEP, as well as all the staff who worked for the LEP over the years. We also want to thank our delivery partners, local education providers and local, regional and national stakeholders who helped us achieve so much.

The Marches Growth Hub will continue to support businesses and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford and Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Each of the three Local Authorities will also continue to provide direct business support locally. Details of this support will be available through the Marches Growth Hub website and from the Local Authorities directly. Website: | email:

The Marches Careers Hub will continue to be delivered and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford & Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Website: | email:

For any queries about Getting Building Fund (GBF), Local Growth Fund (LGF) and Marches Investment Fund (MIF) projects supported by the Marches LEP please contact:

For any finance queries please contact:

The solvent liquidation of the Marches LEP is being managed by the Evelyn Partners Limited. For any matter related to this please contact:

Skip to content