Image: Gresham House.

Gresham House Energy Storage Fund has acquired two battery storage facilities from VLC Energy for £29.2 million.

This includes a 40MW facility in Glassenbury, Kent, and a 10MW facility in Cleator Moor, Cumbria. The sites are some of the biggest grid storage facilities in the UK, Gresham said, and both are operating on Enhanced Frequency Response (EFR) contracts to January 2022 that were awarded in the National Grid’s 2016 EFR auction. The two sites represent a quarter of the 2016 EFR capacity.

The facilities both have 15-year Capacity Market contracts and 30 year leases of which two years have elapsed. Gresham says that thanks to its location the Glassenbury site also has significant potential to offer Reactive Power revenue earning services.

This increases Gresham's portfolio of operational utility-scale battery storage projects 125MW. This will further increase to 174MW when the previously announced acquisition of the 49MW project, located at the Red Scar Business Park, is completed and the site connected to the grid.

John Leggate CBE, chairman of Gresham House Energy Storage said: “We are delighted to follow our successful £41.6million fundraise in October with the acquisition of these operational facilities from VLC Energy.

“We are pleased with progress since our IPO 13 months ago, and this marks the third acquisition since the Seed Assets were purchased at IPO. This takes the Fund’s operational portfolio to 125MW and with a strong pipeline of acquisitions yet to follow.”

There are three further project that Gresham is expected to acquire once they are commissioned and operational, including two of 50MW each and the Littlebrook extension of 5MW.

Gresham's acquisition from VLC Energy, a joint venture between Low Carbon and VPI Immingham a subsidiary of Vitol Group, completes a busy year for the fund.

Alongside acquisitions such as Red Scar, it signed a contract with KiWi Power for the optimisation of its 15MW Lockleaze battery in Bristol. It also acquired a 5% stake in Noriker for £400,000.

The fund completed its latest fundraising drive in October, raising £41.6 million but falling short of the £58 million it originally targeted. This latest acquisition brings Gresham one step closer to its target of having 150MW of battery storage by Q1 2020.