Funding boost for local groups

A number of Londonderry groups have benefited after SSE Airticity handed out more than £176,000 to community groups close to its Slieve Kirk Wind Park.

A total of 41 community groups will benefit from the £176,680 fund, including schools, sports clubs and community centres.

The Rural Area Partnership in Londonderry (RAPID) will be using the funding to install new windows to improve energy efficiency.

Una Cooper, Programme Manager at RAPID, said: “With support from SSE Airtricity, RAPID has been able to carry out extensive energy efficiency improvements in a disused part of our premises. This area is now being used as a community training hub. This year’s funding will enable us to further improve our energy efficiency by installing new windows at the front of the building.”

City of Derry Rugby Club is putting this year’s contribution towards energy efficient pitch lighting.

Ian Stone, Vice Chairman - Finance and Marketing, commented: “The funding from SSE Airtricity will make a big difference to our club. Our pitches are used throughout the winter months, and floodlighting is required from September to March for our evening programmes and community activities. Investing in energy efficient pitch lighting will reduce our energy output by around 12,500kw annually, which translates to decreasing our yearly electricity bills by 62%.”

Through its Community Fund programme, SSE Airtricity makes annual contributions to community groups in the vicinity of its wind farms. The company has been donating to local projects around Slieve Kirk Wind Park since 2012, and this latest presentation takes its overall contribution in the region to over £930,000. The majority of the groups are putting this latest funding towards improving their energy efficiency measures