The Team

Energy Local is a Community Interest Company (a type of not-for-profit). Mary Gillie is a director.

Dr Mary Gillie - Founder and Director

Mary GillieFounder of Energy Local, Mary is an applied physicist by training but her career has been as an engineer. She loves new ideas and has run numerous field trials and feasibility studies to make our energy systems more efficient and to connect more renewables. She enjoys working with science and people to make our society and environment better for everyone. She has been bringing together the different components for Energy Local for a number of years.

After gaining a first class masters in applied physics from the University of Edinburgh and her PhD at the University of Strathclyde, she has managed, led or been a team member in high profile technical innovative energy projects from a few thousand to millions of pounds.

Her main area of expertise is the development of smartgrids for the electricity distribution system to increase efficiency and to easily integrate renewable generation. Notably she lead Low Carbon Network Fund (LCNF) ‘Smart Village project’ working with Ashton Hayes, been technical engineer for LCNF Customer Lead Network Revolution and My Electric Avenue. She managed Ashton Hayes Low Carbon Communities Challenge (LCCC) Project and Local Energy Assessment Fund project and worked on Elexon funded investigations in local energy markets.


Gillian Wright - Club Development Manager

Gillian Wright

Gillian began as Club Development Manager with Energy Local in late 2019. She has worked in the energy industry for over 20 years in various guises from managing large universities’ energy, to community engagement programmes on energy behaviour change and even developing biogas feasibility studies as a volunteer consultant in rural Malawi.

Her role with Energy Local is to support Clubs set up and grow and to find new potential Clubs across England, Wales and Scotland.  If you have an idea for a Club, no matter how early you are in thinking about it, get in touch with her and she can guide you through. 



Luke Farrar - Software Development

Luke Farrar


Luke lives in Bethesda and has been involved in the Club there from the start. 

He is working on our Home Hub System with Megni to give people a helping hand to schedule appliances for the best times of day. 




Robbie Short - Communications and Admin Support

Robbie Short


Robbie is based in Bangor and joins us to help with communications and admin. 

He is interested in the philosophy of how to persuade people to change their behaviour and is a keen photographer. 




Giles Jones - Club Advisor


Giles is one of the more recent members of Energy Local and is currently the Club Adviser for Capel Dewi, Llandysul, Dyffryn Banw and Machynlleth.  He has a varied background including a degree in Environmental Planning and Management, a teaching postgraduate in primary teaching and working in a language school in Sevilla, Spain.

 His role with Energy Local is to support various Energy Clubs doing outreach into the communities and helping to raise awareness and increase their size. If you are in a club or thinking of joining a club in these areas, he can support you or guide you through the process. 



Holly Tomlinson - Associate


Holly Tomlinson joined the Energy Local team in late 2017 as Regulation and Supplier Manager. She is responsible for resolving regulatory queries and working with Energy Suppliers and other energy industry participants on developing current and new projects.  She is also the Ynni Lleol Bethesda Energy Local Club Advisor, supporting the local group in recruiting new people, holding events and answering queries.

She was inspired to join Energy Local because it is a novel way to solve multiple problems in our energy system, whilst building community cohesion and giving people a stake in local renewables.  She is particularly enthusiastic about the potential of local balancing, which is at the heart of Energy Local, to make renewables work.

Prior to Energy Local, Holly worked for 6 years for renewable energy company, Ecotricity, as regulatory and policy analyst and regulatory team manager. 

In addition to working for Energy Local, she is a Director of Tyddyn Teg, a cooperatively run organic veg farm. She gets involved in various environmental campaigns and is a Wales branch coordinator for small and sustainable farmers union the Landworkers’ Alliance Cymru, which advocates for a fairer and more sustainable food system. She has a degree in international politics and economics and a graduate diploma in law, and continues to be interested in all these topics.


Rania Alqass - Associate

Rania Alqass

Rania keeps the paperwork in order and tries to keep the rest of the team in order. Generally our chief organiser. 

Having studied English and Computer Science and trained in research, she has worked for a range of businesses and social enterprises in Palestine, Norway and the UK, from raising awareness of the social economic issues facing Palestine and growing organic vegetables, to being a network coordinator, an interpreter, an international representative, and a conflict resolution officer.