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RWE Camster Wind Farm Community Fund

Grant size Up to £25,000
Key dates  
Application deadlines: 31st March and 30th September
Notification dates: End May and end November

About this fund

This fund supports charitable activities or services of benefit to those living in the following Community Council areas in Caithness: Latheron, Lybster and Clyth; Watten; and Tannach and District. Constituted not-for-profit groups or organisations working to benefit people in these areas may apply.

The fund is provided by RWE, owner of the Camster Wind Farm. Starting in September 2013, it receives at least £150,000 annually (index-linked) for the Wind Farm lifetime, expected to be 25 years. The annual donation is split equally between the three Community Council areas.

Note there are three funds also providing grants for projects benefitting this community council area and is administered by Foundation Scotland. These are the Bad a Cheo Wind Farm Fund, the Tannach & District Wind Farm Trust and the Watten Wind Farm Trust.

The available balances are currently:

  • Latheron, Lybster & Clyth: £89,000
  • Tannach & District: £137,000 
  • Watten: £190,000.

Purpose of this fund

The outcomes for this fund are:

  1. There are more and better opportunities to take part in sports and recreational pursuits
  2.  Access to and through settlements is safer
  3. People of all ages enjoy more, better and varied activities and services
  4. Community life is enhanced and maintained through a wide range of activities, events and improved amenity of settlements
  5. Economic activity is encouraged within the fund area
  6. People have more vocational skills and experience
  7. The natural and cultural heritage is more valued, experienced and understood by both visitors and residents
  8. Energy use in homes and community buildings is more sustainable
  9. Tourism opportunities are promoted and created in the fund area.

Your application must demonstrate how it contributes to at least one of these outcomes. 

The fund outcomes reflect local needs and aspirations that have been identified through extensive community consultation in 2012. The consultation informed a detailed profile of the communities served by the fund, which Foundation Scotland prepared in partnership with Caithness Voluntary Groups and Latheron, Lybster & Clyth Community Development Company. Download a copy of the community profile

Additional criteria

  • Local consultation on the need for your project: Applicants should demonstrate that they have consulted an appropriate and proportionate number of the project's intended beneficiaries and can demonstrate they are supportive of the proposal.
  • Partnership working: Where appropriate, applicants should consider whether delivering their project in partnership with other organisations/groups will add value (financial, capability, or other). This could involve working with voluntary, private or public sector bodies that operate at a local, regional or national level.
  • Local procurement: Where appropriate, applicants should seek local providers of the goods and services they are seeking a grant towards. However, this should be shown to offer the best value, balancing considerations of cost, availability and quality as appropriate to the specific goods or service in question. The definition of ‘local’ will vary depending on the goods/services in question. In some cases, it could be taken to mean within the Area served by the Fund, in others Caithness or indeed the North of Scotland.

Who can apply?

Groups and organisations working to benefit people in any of the four communities can apply for a grant. Your group/organisation must meet our standard eligibility criteria. It does not need to be a registered charity.

Applications from groups or organisations located out with the fund area will be considered case-by-case and must demonstrate a clear benefit for residents within the fund area. 

What can’t be funded?

Information on what the fund cannot support is provided here.

How are decisions made?

Recommendations on grant awards are made by a Panel of people who live in the fund area. The Panel also advises on fund strategy. 

The Panel comprises up to 12 people - four representatives from each of the three Community Council areas. Each four is made up of one Community Councillor and three members appointed from the wider community appointed through an open and transparent recruitment process. Opportunities to become a Panel member will be openly advertised when these arise locally and on this website.

Panel members serve for a maximum of four years, retiring on a phased basis to ensure knowledge and expertise are retained. The current Panel members are:

Latheron, Lybster & ClythTannach & DistrictWatten
Pat Hendry (Community Council representative)Holly Forbes (Community Council representative)Jim MacDonald (Community Council representative)
Steven SwanLinda BremnerLesley Anne Young
Alan TannerElizabeth HendersonJohn Sinclair
Alison Kirk    Terri WattDavid Thomson

The Panel normally makes decisions on awards twice per year, in May and November. Minutes of the latest Panel meetings are available on request from the Community Funds Adviser. Contact details can be found below. More information on the award making process is available here.


Frequently asked questions

  • Can I apply for the cost of feasibility studies and other project development work?

    Some projects, particularly large and transformative projects such as those involving the purchase or development of property, can require significant research/ consultation, planning and other feasibility work. The fund can support such activity; however, applications must demonstrate realistic ambitions, that appropriately skilled and qualified personnel are involved in conducting the work and must not duplicate any similar recent feasibility work.

  • Can the fund support the cost of salaries?

    Applications towards salaries or wages must show how the position will contribute to the achievement of the fund outcomes in a measurable way, listing the main outputs to be delivered over the grant funding period. Where funding for more than one year has been agreed in principle, grant payments in each year will be dependent on evidence that these outputs have been achieved in the previous year. Applications towards salaries or wages must also:

    • demonstrate how the salary/wage rate has been arrived at, including how it has been benchmarked with comparable posts
    • provide a job description and person specification for the post, and
    • outline the recruitment process, ensuring this is being run in a fair and open way.
  • Can the fund support 100% of project costs?

    Applicants are not required to source any specific proportion of matched funds for their project. However, you should explore other possible funding sources for their project. Awards from the Trust should not displace funding that could be obtained from other sources but should help leverage additional funds if possible. Additionally, the availability of the fund should not reduce community groups’ commitment to organising local activities that contribute to a vibrant community calendar and promote community spirit. 

  • Can I apply for a grant towards costs over several years?

    Where considering a request for funding over several years (a multi-year grant), the Panel also need to consider the implications this may have in terms of reducing the amount available to distribute to other causes in future years. Where multi-year funding has been agreed, the release of funding for each year will depend on evidence that your group has achieved the agreed activities and outcomes for the previous year. Multi-year awards are usually offered over a maximum of three years; however, the Panel can consider up to five years where the applicant can demonstrate a need and significant community benefit. Please get in touch with us before applying, as additional information will be required for multi-year awards.

  • Can the fund support my group’s core running costs?

    Yes, you can apply for core (‘business as usual’) costs, however, the Panel is concerned that grants should not replace typical fundraising efforts (such as local events), which often foster community in themselves. Therefore, if you are applying for funding towards operational costs please ensure the rationale is fully explained.

  • How many applications can I submit?

    You can apply for funding for more than one project in each round. You can also apply for and hold more than one grant in any year however you may be required to provide monitoring reports for previous grants before any further awards is made.

  • What if my project needs more or less than the minimum grant amount?

    Each Community Council operates a micro-grant scheme and different rules and timing apply to each area. Please contact your local Community Council to apply for a micro-grant

    Requests for more than £25,000 may be considered on a case-by-case basis where you can provide evidence that your proposal will bring about significant benefit for the community. Please contact us before applying.

How to apply

Complete the online application form. Completed applications and supporting documents must be received by the application deadline.  

If you would like to review the questions you will be asked to answer before starting the form, you can see them here.

If you have any problems accessing the form, please email or call 0131 524 0324 and we can help.

Contact information

For application process and technical enquiries

Central Systems Support

For criteria and fund priority enquiries

Eilidh Coll, Community Funds Adviser

Fund news

Featured case studies

More RWE Camster Wind Farm Community Fund case studies

Read a selection of case studies detailing some of the projects and activities that have received funding from the RWE Camster Wind Farm Community Fund.

This includes funding for the "Tool Shed Project" run by Latheron Lybster and Clyth Community Development Company. The Tool Shed Project is aimed at local young people who are looking to develop new skills to gain employment. 

View case studies