Banks Renewables goes the extra community mile

August 27, 2013 | Community News

We have shown our commitment to the local communities surrounding our proposed Crofthill Wind Farm after holding an extra round of public exhibitions.

49 locals turned out to the exhibitions which were held on August 14 and 15 to find out more about the application, as well as learn more about a community partnership proposal which could provide significant benefits for the local community should plans for the wind farm go ahead.

The partnership secures for the communities a 2% share of the annual gross revenue from the wind farm. This funding can then be used by local groups, organisations and initiatives close to the heart of the community.

Following discussions with local people, businesses and South Lanarkshire Council, we have agreed to ring-fence £43,500 per year of this community funding for the first 5 years of the wind farm  operating into an area targeted training and employment initiative.

Based on similar schemes elsewhere this could create new opportunities for around 100 people, helping them to find long term employment.

The community revenue share, based on current estimates, would result in overall community funding of £130,000 per year on average during the life of the wind farm, should the proposals go ahead; around £3.2M over the life of the wind farm.

Colin Anderson, development director at Banks Renewables, said: “Holding these extra exhibitions is part of our ongoing commitment to working with the local communities surrounding our sites, keeping them fully informed of the application process, as well as giving an opportunity to listen to what they have to say.

“The fact that 49 people took the opportunity to find out more about how the plans will progress and how they can become involved is great and we really hope many that more people will get involved over the coming months.

“We set out to create a wind farm that has the widest positive impact in terms of the community, environment and local economy and we believe, if approved, the Crofthill proposal will achieve this.

“With the finalisation of the community partnership proposals, we hope that people will now be able to consider the positive impacts that this proposal could have for their area if approved.”

It is hoped that the proposed community partnership could result in more people actively participating in their community and helping to deliver exciting local projects, be this through their community council or a local development or community trust.

The planning application for Crofthill Wind Farm is expected to be submitted to South Lanarkshire Council in late autumn of this year.

Colin added: “Hopefully we have shown over the last 18 months or so that we really do listen to people and that we have taken their views into account in developing the Crofthill proposal, which is all about delivering long-lasting benefits focused on key local issues.

“We look forward to developing our relationship with the communities around Crofthill and helping them achieve their ambitions”

We have extensive experience of working in partnership with local communities across Scotland and the United Kingdom to successfully design and develop new energy schemes and deliver a range of local economic, social and environmental benefits, tailored to their individual community needs.

Equivalent projects by the firm have resulted in the creation of jobs and training initiatives, provision of community infrastructure, delivery of major environmental projects and direct funding into community groups.

For more information on the project please visit www.banksgroup.co.uk/crofthill

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