BBQ It or Bin It

It looks like it’s going to be a hot one this bank holiday weekend and as things are heating up, so will lots of BBQs. But with so many different types of food to offer it can be difficult to choose what to add to the shopping list. Nobody likes too many leftovers, and even worse, everybody hates going hungry!

That’s why we’ve carried out a survey – BBQ It or Bin It, asking people to rank different types of BBQ foods to find the Nation’s favourite. And the results are in… It turns out the most popular BBQ delicacy is the corn on the cob! Followed closely by the classic side dish of coleslaw and in third place, none other than the staple sausage.

Ending up in the bin is grilled fish and prawns, so no need to visit the fish counter on your shopping trip. Halloumi also didn’t fare well coming second from bottom.

Yorkshire and the Humber are lovers of sausages taking top position in this region, in the South West coleslaw was voted top followed by burgers.

Which Love Islander Should You Couple Up With?

Love Island 2019 is in full force and whilst some islanders heads’ are being turned with each passing day, other couples just don’t seem to be connecting. Therefore, at The Solar Centre we decided to analyse the solar energy of star signs giving islanders the inside information on who to graft. Hopefully this can make its way into the villa before its too late!

Our Love Island Star Sign compatibility matrix tells us if there is an energy to send pulses racing or whether a re-coupling is necessary. Find out which Love Islander you should couple up with below…

Love Island 2019 villa lights – Get that look!

Love Island is back for a fifth series and as ever the villa is setting this year’s must-have outdoor
lighting trends

The 2019 Love Island Villa Garden Lights!

Love Island Villa Garden
You don’t need to have been watching too closely this year to notice that Love Island has gone ball light crazy! I mean sure, there were a few ball lights knocking around last year, but this year they have taken things to a whole new level! There are the massive ball lights around the villa garden, ball lights by every bed and even ball lights on every table on Love Island: Aftersun.

Ball Lights In The Love Island Bedroom

Ball (shape) lights in the bedroom too!

We have a sneaking suspicion that the ball lights on Aftersun may indeed be our very own Shapelights Sphere which appeared on The Only Way Is Essex a few months ago, but we can’t say for sure.

Shapelights Sphere on Love Island: Aftersun?

Either way, the Shapelight Sphere is a 35cm diameter version of all the indoor or outdoor ball lights you can see on Love Island or Love Island: Aftersun. Why do I say that? I say that because you can use our Shapelights anywhere indoors or outdoors! Shapelights can be USB charged or solar
powered outdoors or you plug them into the mains and use them indoors. Once powered up Saheplights can be set to gently change colour from white, warm white, blue, light blue, green, lime, purple, pink, orange and red or you can set your Shapelight to stay on your favourite colour.
A keener eye will have noticed the main love island tree has been beautifully wrapped in warm white fairy lights this year as it was last year too. We offer two ranges of warm white solar fairy lights to help you get that Love Island look. We have our value Elan range which comes in 100 (10m) and 200 (20m) lengths. Or our premium Lumify USB Solar Fairy Lights which, like our Shapelights, can be USB charged so you don’t need Love Island weather to keep them going night after night even if you don’t have a great solar panel location. Our Lumify USB chargeable solar powered fairy lights come in 100 LED (10m) and 300 LED (30m) lengths.

Are these the solarcentre Lumify Solar and USB Fairy lights?

Warm White Solar Fairy Lights on Love Island 2019?
Finally, we come to the legendary Love Island Terrace where we’ve seen everything from group chats, awkward one to ones and first kisses. If you can draw your eye away from the drama you will see that there is a lot of festoon lighting creating that romantic ambience.

Festoon lit Love Island Terrace 2019

We have plenty of festoon lights for you to choose from. From our value range we have our Elan Solar Festoon Lights which offer 20 5cm diameter festoon balls along a 10m string. From our premium USB chargeable Lumify range we have our stunning warm white Lumify USB Solar Vintage
which come in two lengths: 10 bulbs on a 7m string or 20 bulbs on a 14m string.

Devasting photos show the effects of climate change in the years to come

Climate change is a constant topic of conversation and as one of the UK’s leading eco brands, we wanted to show the impact climate change could have on popular tourists landmarks in years to come.

Many people are choosing to go on holiday at this time of year and we picked out some of the tourist destinations both in the UK and abroad that are most at risk of climate change.

Using Photoshop we can show what each place will look like in years to come and these changes are based on real research and studies of climate change – so what is shown in each picture is extremely likely to happen!

Lake District

The Lake District – a popular holiday destination in the North West England famous for the mountain views and lakes. Research has shown that the Lake District is at threat from climate change with many changes likely to occur.

Species are likely to decline including the mountain butterfly, with this there will be an increase in pygmyweeds and Japanese knotweeds – not the type of plants you want in your back garden.

Heavy rainfall will cause erosion to the ground, footbridges and footpaths. As a result, this will increasedirt in the lakes.

In the summer months, lake levels will also fall drastically- causing picturesque views to diminish.

Research source: Lake District National Park

Big Ben

London is one of the most popular destinations for tourists visiting the UK and one of the most iconic buildings is Big Ben. But climate change could threaten this 160-year-old clock.

Research has suggested climate change will cause flooding from the North Sea and river flooding from The Thames. This would result in mass flooding to London City and create an abundance of surface water – heavy rainfall will no doubt add to this problem and even walking across Westminster bridge may be problematic.

Research source: C40 Cities, Engineering and Technology

Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef is the worlds largest coral reef system located off the coast of Australia. A home to snorkelers, divers but most importantly – fish and other marine life. Climate change is already having a huge impact on the Great Barrier Reef with reports suggesting as much of half the great barrier reef is dead.

Rising sea temperatures are the main reason behind this, causing coral bleaching and ultimately killing the coral. And this is likely to increase and soon there could be zero marine life living in one of Australia’s world heritage sites.

Resarch source: National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler


Venice – known as the floating city but soon this could be the sinking city. The city is at constant threat from flooding due to it’s low lying foundations. Anytime there is heavy rain, seawater is pushed into the city. A vulnerable city which could soon lay partially underwater.

Research source: Conde Nast Traveler

The UK’s Greenest Cities

April is here and British Summer Time is well and truly underway, and April isn’t just the month where we tend to spend more time outdoors, it’s also the month of Earth Day. Celebrated for almost 50 years, Earth Day is an international event to help raise awareness and show support for the environmental protection of our planet Earth.

Here at The Solar Centre, we wanted to get involved and help raise awareness of Earth Day and inspire people to be more environmentally friendly. We recognised that sometimes it can be difficult to understand the impact we have on our environment – especially when there are over 7 billion people in the world. So, we wanted to make sure we focused on the environment in the UK and areas which would matter to you.

We’ve taken 10 different factors which are affecting our environment and collected data for each factor in 52 different cities across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland and scored each city between 0 – 10 based on the data. Some of these environmental factors include:

  • CO2 emissions
  • Fly-tipping
  • Traffic congestion

We then averaged the rankings across all the factors to crown the greenest city in the UK. We hope this will inspire you to make a difference in your local area, whether you live in a city or not. You can view our Greenest Cities interactive which shows all the rankings here and find out which city was crowned the greenest.

Can you spot the hidden Rudolph?

We’ve created another Christmas brainteaser for you to solve. We’re asking if you can spot the Rudolph with the bright red nose hiding in the Christmas trees

Only 1 in 5 people at The Solar Centre can spot him within a minute! So how quickly can you find him? 

Christmas puzzle

 Did you find him? You can see where Rudolph is hiding here.

We have even more Christmas puzzles for you solve here.

Merry Christmas from The Solar Centre!

Everybody loves a good brainteaser, so we’ve put together some festive puzzles for you to enjoy and solve!

We’re asking people if they can see the word hidden in the Christmas lights and only 10% of people can spot the hidden word in under 30 seconds! So how long does it take you to see it?

Can you spot the Christmas word hidden in the string of lights?

The quickest time to spot the word here at The Solar centre was an impressive 7 seconds! Can you find it any faster?

Christmas Brainteaser

Can you spot the Christmas word hidden in the star of lights?
This one took us slightly longer to solve with an average time of 49 seconds!
Christmas Brainteaser

Can you spot the Christmas word hidden in the reindeer of lights?
This proved to be the hardest with 21% of people here not being able to see the word at all!
Christmas Brainteaser

We hope you’ve enjoyed these and if you still don’t know the answers click on the links below to reveal the answers…

Answer 1

Answer 2

Answer 3

You can check out our range of Solar Fairy Lights here.

Which Love Islander Should You Couple Up With?

If there’s one thing that’s gripped the nation this summer (apart from the World Cup of course) it’s Love Island! Here at The Solar Centre, we’ve looked to the stars and the planets in our solar system to work out the astrological love matches in the villa.

Our Love Island Star Sign compatibility matrix tells us if there could be a cosmic dance between contestants or a meteor shower and shows who should (according to science) be grafting who. Find out which Love Islander you should couple up with below…

Recycling Rates in England

There is an EU target for the UK to recycle at least 50% of household waste by 2020. With less than 2 years to go, we’ve looked at how close England is to meeting that target and revealed the best places at recycling and the areas that are letting us down!
Our map shows the recycling rates across the country. We’ve compared the worst areas for recycling to the millennial population and political party areas to show some interesting results about who the worst recyclers are.

See the full piece here:

Life on Mars: How Would Humans Survive?

Inspirational works of Sci-fi have allowed our minds to run wild about what life would be like out in deep space or, closer to home, on Mars. However, as breakthroughs are made towards the goal of colonising Mars, it’s important to decipher between what’s science and what’s fiction.

When Matt Damon in The Martian became stranded on Mars he farmed potatoes (*Spoiler Alert*) through fertilising soil with human waste, but would it really be that easy to produce food? Today, ambitious scientists and entrepreneurs are preparing for the future of life on Mars – SpaceX founder Elon Musk announced earlier this year that he wants to colonise Mars as early as 2025 and other organisations such as Mars One and Virgin Galactic are also keen to get humans to Mars. But what will Mars really be like? We’ve done our research and looked at all the facts about the red planet and how we would be able to survive and live on Mars.

Mars is a very different planet compared to Earth, with a year being almost twice as long, as our red neighbour takes longer to orbit the Sun. Humans there would also experience 62.

5% less gravity than we’re used to, meaning they could jump nearly three times higher on Mars compared with Earth. Despite most of Mars being made up from red rock desert, the planet is a lot colder, with average temperatures of -63 °C. Brr! These conditions mean that simply arriving on Mars and starting a new life will not be easy, complex environment-changing steps would need to be taken for basic human survival.

We’ve taken a look at the steps mankind needs to take in order to be able to live on Mars and unearthed (pun intended) what researchers and companies have planned to work on in coming years to solve the problems we will face. Our posters below imagine how would we get to Mars, and create the four basic needs for survival, Oxygen, Water, Warmth, and Food.