Octopus Energy and The Hill Group partner to deliver UK’s biggest ‘Zero Bills’ development

  • Octopus Energy and The Hill Group to develop 89 houses with no energy bills
  • Project will be the biggest ‘Zero Bills’ development in the UK to date
  • Deal includes the provision of the first-ever affordable rent ‘Zero Bills’ homes with Clarion Housing Group

London, 13th December 2023 - Energy and technology group Octopus Energy has joined forces with The Hill Group, the award-winning five-star housebuilder and Clarion Housing Group, the largest social landlord in the country, in a landmark strategic partnership to revolutionise sustainable living in the UK.

Hill and Octopus Energy are developing the nation's most extensive 'Zero Bills' housing development, comprising 89 meticulously designed homes at Hollymead Square in Newport, Essex. Residents will pay no energy bills for a minimum of five years, guaranteed.

Of the 89 total, 64 will be sold on the open market. The remaining 25 will be made available for affordable rent and shared ownership by Clarion Housing Group, the UK’s largest social housing provider. These will be the first completed ‘Zero Bills’ homes under affordable rent.

‘Zero Bills’ is a world-first smart proposition that allows customers to move into homes which are fully kitted out with green energy technology and with no energy bills.

Following the success of a ‘Zero Bills’ pilot in Essex, Octopus Energy has now accredited close to 1,000 homes through contracts with other prominent developers. Accredited plots span affordable, social, and private rent, as well as private and shared ownership.

Situated in an idyllic village location, this groundbreaking project at Hollymead Square encompasses an attractive collection of two to five-bedroom houses and two-bedroom bungalows.

Each property at Hollymead Square will be equipped with cutting-edge low-carbon technology, including solar panels, high-quality insulation, heat pumps, and home storage batteries. Designed to exceed the energy requirements for each property, this high level of home energy technology is seamlessly integrated and optimised by Octopus' advanced tech platform, Kraken, to result in zero bills for homeowners.

Octopus Energy's ambitious goal of delivering 50,000 'Zero Bills' homes across the UK and beyond by 2025 aligns with Hill’s strategic goal to deliver net-zero carbon homes by 2030.

Hollymead Square is the first opportunity for the partners to work together to develop and provide net-zero housing and pioneer the way forward for a greener, more sustainable future. Construction of the new homes is underway, and the sales launch is due to take place on 20th January, with the first homes expected to complete in Spring 2024.

Michael Cottrell, Zero Bills Homes Director at Octopus Energy, comments: "This partnership with The Hill Group is the first giant leap in transforming the way we live in our homes and consume energy. This will also mark both the biggest ‘Zero Bills’ development in the UK and the first with affordable rent options with Clarion. This partnership pioneers a future where sustainable living is the standard for everybody, no matter their situation."

Greg Hill, Deputy Chief Executive at The Hill Group, says, “We are excited to be working in partnership with Octopus Energy to provide our customers with the largest residential ‘Zero Bills’ development in the UK. The new homes at Hollymead Square in Newport will provide a blueprint for future sustainable housing and mark the start of our fruitful strategic partnership to deliver new homes complete with cutting-edge low-carbon technology that enable zero energy bills.”

Richard Cook, Group Director of Development at Clarion Housing Group, says, "We are thrilled to be partnering with Octopus Energy and Hill Group on such an innovative project. It’s crucial that we cut emissions and cut bills for homes of all tenures. I am proud that Clarion residents will be among the first to benefit from a Zero Bills home.

To find out more information about the ‘Zero Bills’ homes available at Hollymead Square, please contact Hill at 0808 168 7900 or visit www.hill.co.uk.


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About Octopus Energy Group

Octopus Energy is a global energy and technology group, driving the affordable, green energy system of the future. Its operations span 17 countries and the entire energy value chain. The group invests in, builds and flexibly manages renewable energy, operating a £6 billion portfolio of projects – one of Europe’s largest.

Octopus serves 7.2 million customers through its retail arm, and has licensed its advanced data and machine learning platform, Kraken, to support over 50 million customer accounts worldwide through licensing deals with energy companies, including EDF, E.ON and Origin Energy.

Kraken enables Octopus to drive the electrification of heat and transport through smart tariffs and innovative cleantech. Backed by pension funds, investors and energy giants, Octopus Energy Group businesses deliver cheaper, greener energy and cutting-edge tech to countries and customers worldwide. For more information, check out our website.

About The Hill Group

Hill is an award-winning housebuilder and one of the leading developers in London and the South East, renowned for its partnership ethos specialising in the building of distinctive new places and communities. It is now in the process of expanding operations both in the South West and the Midlands.

In its 24th year, this family-owned and operated company has grown to establish itself as the UK's second-largest privately-owned housebuilder, with an impressive and diverse portfolio of developments ranging from landmark, mixed-use regeneration projects to homes in rural communities.

Employing over 800 staff, the company operates from five strategically located regional offices, with its head office based in Waltham Abbey, Essex.

Hill anticipates completing over 2,800 homes in 2023 and has a controlled land bank with planning consent for over 8,500 units. Around half of the development portfolio is in joint venture to deliver a range of mixed tenure developments, reflecting Hill’s commitment to partnerships with government, local authorities, housing associations, and private clients.

Hill has won over 480 industry awards, including Best Medium Housebuilder at the Housebuilder Awards for the last three years, where in 2022, Hill’s commitment to creating exceptional homes and sustainable communities was recognised with the Best Community Initiative and Best Sustainability Initiative. Hill’s impressive Cavendish Villas at the highly sustainable Knights Park development in Eddington, Cambridge won Best Family Home at the 2022 Evening Standard New Homes Awards, as well as Best House and Best Exterior Design at the 2022 WhatHouse? Awards. In addition, Hill has been awarded the 5-star status in the Home Builders Federation’s annual Customer Satisfaction Survey for the past six years.

The Hill Group is donating 200 fully equipped modular homes to local authorities and homeless charities as part of a £15 million pledge through its Foundation 200 programme, launched in 2019 to mark Hill’s 20th anniversary.

Follow us on LinkedIn and Instagram @HillGroupUK

About Clarion Housing Group

Clarion Housing Group is the country’s largest social landlord with more than 350,000 people nationwide calling a Clarion home their own.

Our mission is to provide affordable homes for those who need them most, and our development arm (Latimer) builds thousands of new homes each year across the country.

We know that having a safe and secure home enables people to build better lives, and we believe being a good social landlord is about making a difference to our residents and communities.

Our charitable foundation, Clarion Futures, works with charities, social enterprises, and other organisations to provide employment support and apprenticeship opportunities to residents, as well as money management advice and help getting online.


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