A 14-turbine wind farm, being built in the Scottish Borders, is set to be owned by members of the public in what will be Britain’s biggest people-owned renewable energy project.

The site at Whitelaw Brae near Tweedsmuir has been secured by Ripple Energy in an agreement with developers BayWa r.e. It means thousands of people across the country will be able to join together to co-own the wind farm via a co-operative, powering their homes with up to 100% green energy, reducing their electricity bills, and cutting their carbon footprint.

Ripple manages the co-operative and works with multiple energy suppliers to apply savings generated by the wind farm directly to member’s electricity bills. The site has been developed by BayWa r.e., while the turbines will be manufactured by Vestas. On average by weight, 85% of Vestas turbines can be recycled or reused.

The site will have the potential to power more than 50,000 homes and generate around 145GWh per year. At full power, it will take just three minutes to provide enough electricity for an average household for an entire year.

Sarah Merrick, Founder and CEO of Ripple Energy, said: “It used to be that installing solar panels on your roof was the only way to own a source of clean energy and reap the financial benefits.

“Wind energy is the cheapest source of electricity in the UK, but the energy market makes it harder for ordinary people and businesses to access it.

“Ripple’s mission is to change that, making renewable energy ownership affordable and accessible to everyone, everywhere. Whitelaw Brae is a significant milestone in this journey, representing a true partnership between people and the environment.

“By owning just a credit card size slice of a turbine, most people can power their homes with 100% green energy. Not only that, but wind energy offers an abundant source of low-cost, clean power, so owners will be contributing in a tangible way to the UK’s energy security and net-zero efforts.

“This will be Ripple’s biggest project to date and indeed the largest people-owned renewable energy site anywhere in the UK and potentially the world. We couldn’t be more excited to see it come to life.”

The wind farm will begin generating in late 2026 and is Ripple’s fourth project since the company launched seven years ago. Around 900 members have already saved over £1.2m on their bills in two years after the switch-on of their turbine at Graig Fatha near Coedely, Wales in 2022.

An eight-turbine wind farm at Kirk Hill near Girvan, Scotland is also due to complete this month, while work continues on Ripple’s first solar park at Derril Water near Devon, England where members share the power as well as the ownership. Chris Keating from Cheshire is already a Ripple member and co-owner of the turbine at Graig Fatha. He said:

"I am now able to power my flat with 100% green energy, which has not only stabilised my electricity bill during uncertain times but allowed me to make a meaningful contribution to tackling climate change. It’s been amazing to be part of a group of people from all over the UK, taking ownership of their electricity and driving forward the country’s transition to clean energy.

“It just goes to show what can be achieved when we come together.” Landscaping work on site will include planting around 56 hectares of native woodland, scrubland and marshland, providing nesting habitat for wader species, and promoting biodiversity with the growth of heather and mosses.

Ripple is currently accepting registrations to a priority access list from anyone interested in owning part of the wind farm. This access list was closed at 9pm on Thursday 18th April, with those registered now able to buy their share.

The wider public will have access from Friday 26th April.