Historical Cathedral to install solar energy panels on roof
A historical cathedral in the UK is set to become the first in the country—and possibly the world—to install solar panels on its roof.
The Coventry Cathedral applied recently for approval of its building plans to install some $160,800.00 worth of photovoltaic panels on its rooftop, The Telegraph said.
This would, perhaps, make the historic church the first of its kind in the world to have solar panels on the rooftop. As of now, at least one church in London has solar panels on its roof, but it is not a cathedral.
A cathedral in Saskatchewan, Canada namely the Saskatoon Cathedral, has solar panels on its stained glass windows.
Coventry Cathedral has one advantage over other cathedrals in the city, because it has a flatter rooftop, which should facilitate the laying of some 178 panels occupying a space of 2,153 square feet, Edie Newsroom reported.
Jane Woodward, executive director of the cathedral told Low Carbon Economy, “[In] Coventry, many cathedrals have quite steep pitched roofs behind shady parapets whereas ours is rarely flat so we’re hoping it will be possible.”
Woodward told The Telegraph, “We are looking at putting a 50 kilowatt solar array on the roof and we hope it will significantly reduce our electricity bills.”
However, they still have some hurdles to overcome, including the solicitation of permits from the Coventry City Council and the Cathedral Fabric Commission of England, The Telegraph reported.
The present cathedral sits alongside the ruins of its original building, which was destroyed in 1940 by Luftwaffe bombs. The newer cathedral building was constructed in 1956.
The solar roof will be built by EOS which is affiliated with Alumet, a renewable energy firm in Southam, in collaboration with the Renewable Energy Technology Alliance, according to Insider Media.
Mrs Woodward told The Telegraph, “The Church of England and the Archbishop of Canterbury are interested in the project for the reasons of environmental stewardship and climate justice.”
Woodward told The Telegraph, “Climate change is affecting people who are in poverty the most. Issues about social justice are very important to what we stand for so this is not just an iconic thing for us.”
Solar Roof Club
According to Woodward, the project is “potentially very powerful,” The Telegraph reported, because it is also a way to encourage Christians in the city to use solar technology on the rooftops of their homes, other church buildings and church halls.
The cathedral project is expected to be finished by the end of the year, in time for the Queen’s visit in 2012, and the Olympic football games which will be held in the Ricoh arena, to be renamed the City of Coventry Stadium in line with Olympic sponsorship rules, according to Low Carbon Economy.