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Mears wins £20m Peterborough solar panel deal

Mears has won a £20 million contract to install photovoltaic panels to more than 3,500 houses in Peterborough, in what is believed to be the largest deal of its kind.

The contractor will carry out installations and associated works in partnership with British Gas, which is funding the job through the feed-in tariff scheme over the next 25 years.

The homes are managed by Peterborough-based Cross Keys Homes.

Mears believes the deal - which is worth £30m overall - is the largest social housing solar contract ever awarded.

Mears chief executive David Miles said: “We see increasing opportunities in this area into 2012, particularly as the Green Deal and other energy efficiency measures come into play.

“Cross Keys will provide us with an important reference site to lead our drive into this emerging energy opportunity as we continue our partnership with British Gas, which gives us access to both funding and expertise in this area.”

The first panels will be fitted in September and all works will be completed by next April. Mears values its share of the contract at £20m.

The award follows a £28m social housing solar installation contract awarded to Breyer by Colchester Borough Council in June.

The company also recently won a £18.5m deal to install solar panels for the Peabody Trust in London.