Thirteen local organisations in Lancashire and Cumbria coastal communities have been awarded grants totalling GBP 250,000 through DONG Energy’s new Walney Extension Community Benefit Fund.
Each year, approximately GBP 600,000 will be made available for community projects for the expected 25-year lifetime of the Walney Extension offshore wind farm off the Walney Island coast in Cumbria. GBP 100,000 of the annual fund is ring-fenced for a ‘Skills Fund’.
“DONG Energy’s Walney Extension offshore wind farm, currently under construction, will be operating off the coast of Walney Island for 25 years so we have set up a voluntary community benefit fund to ensure that the local community also benefits from the development,” Rachel Cary, DONG Energy’s Lead Stakeholder Relations Advisor, said.
”The independent steering group, made up of local council and voluntary sector representatives, has selected some great projects from supporting mental health charities and programmes to renovating sports and community facilities. Together they should leave a lasting positive impact on the local community.”
The community benefit fund is being managed for DONG Energy by the national charity Grantscape.
Applications for grants of between GBP 500 and GBP 75,000 from the main fund must be from community and environmental organisations located in coastal community areas in areas stretching between Fleetwood in Lancashire to Seascale in Cumbria.
There are two application rounds each year for groups to apply to, and the next closing date is 11 January 2017.