Already ranked as number one in ‘Cool Campers’ magazine and highly recommended by the Guardian, Thistledown Farm is adding another string to its bow by generating its own renewable electricity.

The environmental campsite, organic farm, nature reserve and educational facility prides itself on practicing the highest levels of sustainability and eco-tourism. The site already utilises composting toilets that require no water usage and feeds the farm animals excess waste from the neighbouring vegetable shop.

The campsite, run by father and son Richard and Ryan Kelly, has even built a shop on premises so that campers do not have to get in the car to stock up on essentials.

The new shop is home to a new 14kWp solar PV array, fitted by Indepower, that will power the building as well as utilising sustainable-sourced wood to heat the structure. The array will provide the building with carbon-free, renewable electricity as well as a sizeable reduction in electricity bills as the campsite’s peak demand is in summer.

The solar system consists of REC245 modules partnered with SMA inverters. The father-son team are already impressed with the performance after the system outperformed the Government-predicted values by 25 percent. Richard and Ryan Kelly plan on reinvesting any income generated from the feed-in tariff scheme back into future renewable developments, including, rainwater harvesting, ground source heat pump and a small wind turbine.