Eight local initiatives in Sutherland have been awarded over £54,000 from the second round of funding generated by SSE’s Strathy North wind farm community investment fund.
The successful applicants are based within the Melvich, Strathy & Armadale and Bettyhill, Strathnaver & Altnaharra community council areas.
Some £170,000 is provided annually by the SSE fund, which has already awarded a total of £140,000 since construction of Strathy North began in October 2014. The fund generates community investment based on capacity of the wind farm and during the project’s lifetime is expected to give back £4.25million to the local area.
The latest awards include £3,300 towards the purchase of musical instruments for Feis Air An Oir, as well as an award of £2,800 to Altnaharra Parent Council to support a range of activities and equipment for Altnaharra School and nursery.
Taigh Na Gaighlig Mhealanis secured £8,175 towards the production of a CD and a tour of the North Coast by Sutherland musicians showcasing the works of Rob Donn, and Melvich football club’s £10,000 award will ensure new goal posts and machinery can be purchased to aid the up keep of the pitch together with new strips.
Emma Montgomery, a Community Fund panel member from Melvich, said: “It is really positive to see so many local community projects thriving as a result of this huge cash injection from the Strathy North wind farm fund. The investment is significant in terms of scale but also – vitally – is distributed in a practical way that empowers local people, allowing us to provide much-needed financial support to help keep good initiatives going in a rural area like ours.”
The deadline for the next round of applications for SSE community funds is 30 June 2015.