A COMMUNITY group in the East Neuk is delighted after it was awarded funding which could mean big changes for its residents.
The Arncroach and Carnbee Community Development Trust, which was formed in 2011, was awarded £3610 from The Big Lottery Fund after submitting an application last year.
The funding means the group, with the help of professional surveyors, can now carry out an extensive survey of all local residents with a view to installing a source of renewable energy in the area.
Grahame Rogers, chair of the trust, said: “Installing some kind of renewable energy source here would provide cheaper heating for the reisdents and of course a lower carbon footprint. It could also provide a small income for the community to put back into other projects.”
As well as the successful funding bid, the trust are also hoping to continue talks with Fife Council over ownership of Gillingshill Nature Reserve, which many people in the local commnunity have helped to maintain over the years.
“We want to see that area maintained and not lost for the community and other visitors,” said Grahame. “The trust are very interested in speaking about ownership with the Council.”
Grahame hopes 2013 will be the group’s most successful year yet, after a period of bad publicity last year involving the proposed Lingo Windfarm. The trust are hoping that a proposal for two wind turbines by renewables company TGC Renewables could mean financial benefit for the area. Grahame said the company has offered to pay a lump sum of £5000 to the community as soon as the turbine starts to generate energy.
“We’ve always had the best intentions at heart, not only for our own community, but for other communities too. That £5000 could be used to fund a job, or a training scheme or something else which we couldn’t have offered otherwise.”
Looking ahead, there are a number of summer events planned including an open air theatre performance of a Mindsummer Night’s Dream at Kellie Castle, as well as a Family Fun Day incorporating the ‘Big Lunch’, a nationwide event aimed at spending more time with your neighbours.
With nearly 90 members out of a community of 350, Grahame hopes many more people will choose to get involved with the trust.
“I’d love to say that we had 100% of the community as members, and we always welcome people to get involved with the trust. Our members are shareholders, so whatever we do, we do it for them.
“Hopefully some of the things we have organised will help to attract more people to the trust and we can get to that 100%.”