Chance for share of windfarm funding

DONG Energy has set up a community fund.

DONG Energy has set up a community fund.

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Community schemes in Fleetwood have the chance to claim a slice of £500,000 this year - and funds will be up for grabs for the next 25 years.

Groups which think they may be eligible are urged to apply as soon as possible.

The cash will come from the Walney Extension Community Benefit Fund, which is part of the community engagement programme for DONG Energy’s Walney Extension offshore windfarm.

The windfarm is being built 9kms off the Cumbrian Coast.

On completion in 2019, the 660-megawatt windfarm will be the world’s biggest, capable of meeting the electricity needs of more than half a million UK homes.

Around £500,000 will be available in the main fund to support community and environmental projects for each of the 25 years that the Walney Extension will be operating.

An additional £100,000 will be ring-fenced annually for a skills fund that will support educational and training initiatives to equip people for working in engineering industries like offshore wind.

DONG Energy has recruited an organisation called GrantScape to manage the fund.

Applications for grants of between £500 and £75,000 from the main fund must be from community and environmental organisations in coastal community areas stretching between Fleetwood and Seascale in Cumbria.

Brent Cheshire, UK country chairman for DONG Energy said: “This fund recognises the long-term relationship which the Walney Extension offshore wind farm has with the region.

“We believe it is important to support local communities in the areas around our developments and this fund gives us an opportunity to make a difference.”

For more details on how to apply for the fund, and information on deadlines and rules, visit the GrantScape website at:

http://www.grantscape.org.uk/fund/walney-extension-community-fund/