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Glenkerie Wind Farm Community Fund: A Decade of Empowering Communities

  • Date published: 11/03/24
  • Related fund: Glenkerie

The Glenkerie Wind Farm Community Fund in the Scottish Borders is celebrating its 10-year anniversary this year, marking a decade of support to local community projects and organisations.

The aim of the fund, which is provided by Ventient Energy and administered by Foundation Scotland, is to enhance the local area and make it a great place to live, work and visit. Since the fund opened in January 2014, it has provided funding support of over £645,000 to 105 groups and charities across Upper Tweed and Tweedsmuir Community Council areas. The fund has also supported projects in parts of Biggar, Symington, Stobo, Skirling, Roberton, Lamington and Wiston in South Lanarkshire.

All awards are determined by a panel of residents from the Fund areas. The Panel Members use their local knowledge and passion to ensure that awards are making a direct impact in the community. Thanks to their knowledge and insight, and the commitment of hundreds of volunteer groups across the area, the Fund has made a huge difference to residents across the wider Tweedsmuir and Upper Tweed region.

Grants of all sizes have been awarded, from £250 to support Christmas drive-in concerts during Covid, to £50,000 to support the expansion of the community-owned Broughton Village Store.

Andrew Beveridge, Community Council Representative for Upper Tweed Community Council and Panel Member said:

Since the wind farm has been operational, the operators have been committed to ensuring that the local community benefit from the production of green energy within the local vicinity. This has resulted in support for several key community focused organisations, including the community shop, tennis & bowling clubs, not to mention the numerous Micro Grants given to organisations & youth bursaries. Being a rural community, these sources of funding have been invaluable to supporting and sustaining our rural way of life and affording opportunities for our youngsters to participate in activities that would normally only be available in towns and cities. We value the partnership that Ventient Glenkerie has entered into, supporting our local communities, and we look forward to continuing the ongoing partnership for the remainder of the lifetime of the Glenkerie Windfarm.

Debbie Cullen, Community Council Representative for Tweedsmuir Community Council and Panel Member said: 

Access to the Ventient Glenkerie Wind Farm Community Fund - large and micro-grants - has supported investment in community infrastructure and activities, contributing to the ongoing sustainability of Tweedsmuir.

An example of the commitment and long-term impact of the Fund is the ongoing activity of Tweedsmuir Community Company to redevelop the historic Crook Inn. One of the Fund’s first awards was to support building surveys. Ranging from an initial £4,650 in 2014 for topographical and survey work, through to the largest grant of £62,500 towards renovations to create the Café and Community Hub awarded in 2021, the Glenkerie Fund has been alongside the community, throughout the Crook Inn’s redevelopment journey.

Gavin Parker Chair of the Tweedsmuir Community Company said:

I cannot express how supportive the Glenkerie Windfarm has been, providing the opportunity to develop and deliver the Crook Inn project. We have created a legacy within the community, and it is a great feeling to know that the windfarm’s proximity, on our back doorstep, has played such an important role in returning the Crook Inn to a vibrant and buzzing meeting space. Knowing what it has given us and that it is so close, makes this very special. The Tweedsmuir Community Company, Glenkerie Windfarm and Foundation Scotland have partnered together since the beginning to make this happen. Without support from Glenkerie Windfarm, at the beginning of this project, and throughout the journey to where we are today, the Wee Crook Inn, would not have been possible. Thank you Glenkerie and Foundation Scotland for your support, I feel as if it has brought the community back together once again.

The landscape of community activity has changed a lot since the Fund was first established, and the Panel are excited to find out what new ideas community groups bring in the next ten years. They look forward to continuing to work alongside community groups to continue to make lasting change for local residents.

If you think you might want to join the Panel, please contact Niome Lucjan for more information.

You can read more about the fund here:
Ventient Energy Glenkerie Wind Farm Community Fund | Foundation Scotland