Over £140k allocated in first round of awards from ScottishPower Renewables’ Halsary windfarm community benefit fund.
People and communities across the Caithness region are benefitting from the first round of awards from ScottishPower Renewables’ Halsary Windfarm Community Benefit Fund, which will deliver £3.75 million locally over the next 25 years.
Over £98,000 has been distributed through the Caithness Community Fund, a region-wide fund open to projects and initiatives from across all 12 Caithness community council areas, with decisions made by local people for the benefit of local people.
Barry Carruthers, SPR’s Managing Director for Onshore said: “It’s brilliant to see this funding enable the community groups across Caithness. We’re dedicated to supporting the communities around our windfarms, being a sustainable developer and the best of neighbours – and these funds are empowering local people to make decisions that will give the greatest positive impact directly for their local areas.”
Staxigoe and Papigoe Community Hall in Wick has been awarded £7,500, which the group will use to contribute to the installation of insulation and heat pump technology helping reduce the carbon footprint and running costs of the building.
A host of young people across Caithness will benefit from new experiences with almost £13,000 of grants to attend residential trips, to travel to compete at Gymfest in Aberdeen and to travel to Bristol to train at ‘The Wave’ surfing facility.
A further £42,000 of grants have been awarded by the local funding panels in Watten, Halkirk and Latheron, Lybster & Clyth from their own share of the Halsary Windfarm community benefit fund.
Among the schemes supported is the creation of a new Development Officer, employed by Caithness Voluntary Group, who will support the Halkirk & District and Watten communities to drive forward projects and address local priorities.
Siobhan Jarvie, SPR’s Stakeholder & Community Manager, said: “It’s exciting to see the host of local projects that are benefitting from the Halsary Windfarm community benefit fund. We introduced a region-wide pool, to which people from all areas of Caithness can apply. We’ve been listening to the community from the start and have acted on their direct feedback on how they wanted the fund to work for them.
“It’s great to see that a new job is being supported by the local fund too, which will help the communities at Halkirk and Watten make the most of the money they get from Halsary Windfarm, creating a long and lasting legacy.”