Local footballers boosted by new equipment

February 3, 2014 | Community News

Keen footballers with a new East Ayrshire team have been given a boost thanks to a grant from Banks Renewables.

Ochiltree United was formed in the summer of 2013 and is now in line to collect £2250 worth of vital training equipment for its first season in Division Four of the Ayrshire Amateur League.

The team is made of up 23 players from Ochiltree and surrounding areas who train together once per week at Auchinleck Academy 3G facility.

Founded by a group of football enthusiasts from the 1200-population village, the new team has been delighted with the support received from their families, neighbours and local businesses.

That includes the latest £2250 from Banks Renewables, as we are currently working in the area on our plans for a 27MW Wind Farm at High Cumnock, which would include eight turbines, each 132m high.

The team plans to purchase slalom poles, hurdles, speed ladders and nets for training exercises, as well as professional footballs for competitive matches.

Brian Christie, secretary of Ochiltree United AFC said: “The support of businesses like Banks Renewables has been vital for us to get up and running.

“We’re extremely grateful to them and for the support of local people who have helped us create a club which is now a real asset to our community.

“Ochiltree United is a source of local pride, an example of the value of exercise and competition for young people and a great way to bring the community together socially.

“We want to keep growing and competing and donations from businesses such as Banks Renewables mean we can provide a much-needed resource for local young people, while building up a wealth of experience.

“It is to the credit of the team at Banks Renewables that they have spent so long getting to know the community while explaining their wind farm proposals over the past two years and are now supporting community initiatives like this.

“The new equipment we’ve been able to purchase thanks to this donation will allow the team to work on skills, develop overall talent and with luck, help Ochiltree United to some great victories over the coming months.”

We have won widespread local support with our proposals for an innovative community partnership yielding 2.5% of the wind farm revenues for the local area – up to £5.8million over the 25 year lifetime of the project.

The community will also be offered the chance to purchase an equity share option up to 5%, with the revenues generated being directed into worthwhile local projects, including job creation and training schemes, apprenticeships and business start up grants.

Three community councils serving Netherthird & District, New Cumnock and Cronberry, Logan & Lugar, have all publicly given their support to our proposals. We have also been praised by local businesses for commitment to ring fence a significant share of the construction costs for local contractors.

Colin Anderson, director at Banks Renewables said: “We’re pleased to be able to offer our support to clubs and services like Ochiltree United, an important part of the fabric of this community and what makes it tick.

“As an important facility for many young people and their families who live in the area, we’re delighted to help in whatever we can to ensure the club has a wealth of resources to benefit everyone involved.

“While securing permission for our wind farms is part of what we do, an extensive amount of our work involves engaging and connecting with our local area to create a lasting positive legacy, one of the most important objectives of our development with care policy.”

More information on the High Cumnock wind farm proposals is available at the dedicated website – http://www.banksgroup.co.uk/high-cumnock

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