BEE Anglia – Helping business improve their energy efficiency


The BEE Anglia programme ran from January 2016 to July 2022 and saw Groundwork’s Sustainability Consultants support SMEs across the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership area to improve their energy efficiency, reduce carbon emissions and reduce their operational costs.

Funded primarily by the European Regional Development Fund and Suffolk County Council and supported by Norfolk County Council, & Norfolk and Waveney Enterprise Services, BEE Anglia enabled Groundwork to provide business energy efficiency advice and support which was tailored to business’s individual needs. Beyond advice and support, Groundwork supported businesses to apply for match funded grants which enabled the businesses to invest in suggested energy saving initiatives.

Energy efficiency support

Throughout the programme Groundwork visited a number of SME sites across Suffolk and Norfolk to conduct energy efficiency audits, which were then written up into Energy Efficiency Reports and Action Plans.

These documents contained the details of the gas, electricity, oil and vehicle fuel used by the SMEs and the associated CO2e emissions, as well as a breakdown of consumption across major activities such as lighting, heating, machinery use and travel.

Recommendations were provided in the reports on how energy efficiency could be improved with the potential energy, financial and CO2e savings also given. Once the report was received by the SME, they were then offered the opportunity to be supported through the grant application process which could make the reports suggestions a reality.

The combination of the energy audit support and data, alongside the grant scheme, helped SMEs to improve their profitability and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, increase levels of renewable energy generation, reduce their energy intensity and improve their resilience to rising energy costs.

Project outcomes

Over the six-year period, Groundwork and BEE Anglia partners:

  • Provided support to 880 SMEs
  • Supported 255 SMEs to receive grants
  • Generated over £4 million of match funding
  • Delivered an estimated 3,054tCO2e of greenhouse gas reductions from grant funding distributed alone

The businesses involved shared that the support provided was extremely valuable, with feedback survey findings showing that

  • 92% of SMEs said it will be easy or relatively easy to implement at least one recommendation; and
  • 85% of SMEs said the support provided identified Good or Excellent opportunities for savings;
  • 75% of SMEs rated the site visits as Good or Excellent;
  • 87% rated the service overall as Very Good or Excellent.

Feedback from businesses

Feedback included:

Our new site needed a complete renovation; Groundwork were extremely helpful with energy saving advice and recommending grant funding for LED Lighting. We have seen a significant difference in quality of light and expect to see a substantial reduction in our running costs.

Niall Dyer, Managing Director, Plinth Medical

I was very impressed with the service of the Groundwork team, especially the Advisors that came out to visit us. You helped us all to achieve the goal of reducing energy use and it worked for me.

William Bridgman, Chairman, Warren Services

The Groundwork Advisor Ollie found that our system was grossly inefficient and left on all the time. Our new boiler works at 95% efficiency and it is controlled by a fully programmable electronic system, both of which should combine to result in significant savings in fuel over the year. A good reason to look forward to winter!

Adrian Sampson, Partner, Little Beck Properties

There continues to be strong demand from SMEs about the service, therefore Groundwork is supporting partners to explore funding extension which will support more SME and deliver benefits to the delivery area’s carbon footprint goals and the local economy.

For more information about Groundwork’s ability to deliver environmental contracts please click the link below.