Users of a South Yorkshire community church are putting the kettle on after completing the installation of much-needed new kitchen and storage facilities.
Holy Trinity Church in Ulley was awarded a £2,265 grant from the Community Benefits Fund linked to Banks Renewables’ nearby Penny Hill Wind Farm to pay for the replacement of the existing kitchen units, as well as the creation of a new storage unit adjacent to the nearby bathroom facilities that can house all of its cleaning equipment and materials.
Consecrated in 1851, the Church is the only community building in the area that is open throughout the day, and alongside members of the congregation, it is regularly used by walkers, walking groups and cyclists coming through the area who need a convenient stop-off point.
It is also used for a wide range of community functions and activities, including parent & toddler groups, concerts and hosts a free community book library.
Sue Hubbard, Holy Trinity Church warden, says: “The old kitchen units had been in place for about 15 years and were dropping to pieces, while we knew we needed to use the available space more efficiently as things were piled on top of each other all over the place and we had nowhere nearby to store our cleaning equipment and materials.
“Because this equipment had to be kept in a locked vestry, anyone using the space wasn’t able to properly tidy up after themselves when they were finished, which usually meant members of the committee had to come in and clean up instead.
“The new units make the kitchen so much smarter and it’s a much more user-friendly space than it was before. Everything now has its own place in easy reach, we don’t have things stacked on top of each other, and having the extra storage space to hand is a real benefit to everyone. It’s made such a big and very welcome difference.
“Raising this amount of money is a real challenge in a very small community like ours, and getting such generous support from the wind farm fund has made life much easier for everyone.”
The Penny Hill Wind Farm Community Fund, which will provide over £500,000 of community funding over the wind farm’s 25-year lifespan, is ring-fenced for use within the parishes of Aston, Thurcroft, Treeton, Ulley and Whiston, and aims to make a positive, long-term difference to local voluntary groups, environmental projects and community facilities in these areas.
The Penny Hill Wind Farm generates over 41,000 MW of green electricity every year, which is enough to meet the annual energy requirements of more than 10,500 homes, and by doing so, displaces over 14,300 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the electricity supply network per annum.
Lewis Stokes, community relations manager at Banks Renewables, adds: “Revenues generated by Penny Hill are making a real difference to the work of a wide range of local community organisations, and we’re very pleased to have added Holy Trinity Church to this growing list.
“Well over 30 groups that are local to the wind farm have already drawn down over £100,000 from the fund, and we’re really pleased with how it is going.”
Community groups or voluntary organisations in the vicinity of the Penny Hill Wind Farm which are looking for a grant of up to £3,000 should contact James Eaglesham at the Banks Community Fund on 0191 378 6342 to check if their group or project is eligible.