The consultation for the 16-turbine Ray Wind Farm community fund is now well under way. The next stage of the process is to form a steering group of local people from Bavington, Birtley, Corsenside, Elsdon and Kirkwhelpington. Working alongside Vattenfall, the role of this group will be to develop a vision for the fund, drawing on the findings of the consultation, and to establish appropriate governance to manage the £6mn fund once it opens in early 2017.
Paul Nickless, Construction Director, Vattenfall said: “I am delighted with the feedback and ideas that we have received to date from the local community. I hope that members of the community apply to get involved with the steering group to ensure that their area gets the widest possible benefit from the £250,000 annual fund.”
Vattenfall, the wind farm developer and operator have pledged an index linked annual investment of over £250,000 for the lifetime of the wind farm near Kirkwhelpington. If the wind farm generates green power for the next 25 years, the community will see a total investment of over £6 million.
It is envisaged that the steering group will be made up with members ideally from each of the parishes in the immediate areas around the wind farm: Bavington, Birtley, Corsenside, Elsdon and Kirkwhelpington.
Anyone from these five parishes, interested in joining the steering group can find out more from the Community Action Northumberland website.
Andy Dean, Chief Executive of Community Action Northumberland said “This is a great opportunity for passionate local people to help steer how these significant funds are utilised to create maximum benefit.”
Anyone wanting to get in touch about the Ray Wind Farm Community Fund can do so by emailing Julia Plinston from Community Action Northumberland: firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling her on 01670 517178.