Windfarm boost for Glenurquhart and Strathglass

BETTER services for older 
people, activities for children and cheaper energy bills will soon make life easier for residents of a Highland community which will soon be home to a unique windfarm project.

The Soirbheas development in Glenurquhart and Strathglass will give the community a 20 per cent share in the £14.5m windfarm, which is expected to be operational by next year.

The five-turbine windfarm development, led by Corrimony Energy, will sell power to the National Grid and is expected to raise £1m for community projects over the next ten years.

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Soirbheas chairwoman Tanya Castell said: “This project, which is set to earn our communities a valuable revenue stream over the next two decades, will allow us to make a positive impact on climate change by harnessing natural local resources and using them to directly benefit the whole community, delivering significant opportunities for social and economic benefit.”

Social Investment Scotland has agreed to give £500,000 loan funding to the project in recognition of the benefits which will be generated for the community.

SIS chief executive Alastair Davis said: “Soirbheas has had a strong vision for community resilience since it was formed in 2009. Its dedication to transforming the lives of the local community must be commended.”

Andy Drane, partner at Davidson Chalmers, the Edinburgh lawyers who worked on the deal, said the community windfarm project could be the first of many:

“The Corrimony windfarm is a great example of how the renewable energy sector can benefit both developers and local communities.

“This initiative is structured to be much more than a simple energy project.”