Bradford Cathedral is set to become the first in the UK, and possibly the world, to install solar photovoltaics after it received permission from the Cathedrals Fabric Commission for England (CFCE), English Heritage and the local council. Solar panels will now be installed along the entire South Aisle roof, taking into consideration the building’s Grade 1 listing.

Cathedral architect Ulrike Knox, of Knox-McConnell Architects in Saltaire, led the project through the permissions process for this historic heritage building alongside solar installation company Sundog Energy. The 9.87kWp system was designed using Trina Solar panels and SMA inverters.

Canon Andrew Williams, who leads the Cathedral’s Eco Group said, “We have been working hard over the past five years, not only to become more sustainable ourselves, but to encourage members of our congregation to work hard in their own homes and work places to do the same. We’ve changed all our light bulbs, introduced recycling and composting, and installed efficient boilers. We also run a Fairtrade stall every Sunday morning. We’re delighted to be the first cathedral to be installing PV cells on our roof.”

The Dean, the Very Revd Dr David Ison said, “I am very proud of our Eco Group, and our congregation, for what they have achieved.  We are most grateful to the assistance and guidance of the CFCE and English Heritage for their help and support during our application – and also Sundog Energy, our chosen supplier, for their sympathetic handling of this unique project.”

Martin Cotterell, Founder of Sundog Energy said, “I am delighted we have been selected for this exceptional installation which has tremendous iconic status.  Our high technical standards mean that the PV system will maintain the integrity of this historic building while producing clean electricity for decades to come.”

The project will be completed by the end of August 2011.