Blackcraig Wind Farm Community Fund Awards £137,000 To Nine Projects In The Glenkens & Surrounding Areas

The latest round of grant-making from the Blackcraig Wind Farm Community Fund has taken place, with 9 projects benefiting the wider Glenkens and District area celebrating successful bids for support with a total value of £136,826.

The Fund prioritises support for projects or activities that will help communities become more connected, asset rich, economically flourishing or carbon neutral. The smallest award in this round was £2,856 for the installation of plaques and an information board at the Ken Bridge, to celebrate the bicentenary of the construction of this local landmark, designed by famous Scottish engineer John Rennie, described as one of the great British bridge-builders of the 19th century.

Two awards were made at the maximum available sum of £25,000: the first was to
Local Initiatives in New Galloway, towards the next phase of renovating the Town Hall. The
group is currently raising funds for a large scale renovation of the Hall in order to modernise it and make it an accessible, comfortable and energy efficient place to meet; the second was to active new group Dunscore Playpark Project receiving £25,000 towards putting in a new tarmac path round the playing fields in the village, improving accessibility and opportunity for recreational use through walking, scooting, wheeling and cycling.

Jade Crichton, Chair of Dunscore Playpark Project, said:
“We were so pleased to receive this £25,000 award from the Blackcraig
Wind Farm Community Fund – we have now reached our fundraising
goal for this stage of our playpark project. We can’t wait to see the path
installed as it will make a really big difference for families of all ages in
our village.”

As well as the Dunscore project, Trustees were particularly pleased to see applications coming from right across the area of benefit, and spanning the Fund’s strategic priorities – including £14,000 going to Kirkpatrick Durham Community Hall for urgent rewiring work to keep this valued facility in safe use; and £12,540 to contribute to the repair the boardwalks at a local hidden gem, the SWT reserve at Knowetops Lochs.

The nature reserve, near Balmaclellan, is an easy circular walk, great for families – more
information about this lesser known local asset, where to find it and how to get involved in the local volunteer group can be found here. Once installed, the new section of boardwalk will mean SWT can keep the reserve open to the public and will have a lifespan of 30 years.

In addition to these diverse awards, the Trustees were delighted that some of the early
priorities identified in the Glenkens & District Community Action Plan (CAP) published in 2020 are starting to come to fruition in the shape of developed projects which are being taken forward by a range of local community organisations. Awards directly aligned with the Glenkens CAP included support for activities for young people; the development of a local food hub; and a new Glenkens website, providing information and listings for events, activities and facilities right across the Glenkens area.

The fund, provided by Blackcraig Wind Farm (Scotland) Ltd from its Blackcraig Windfarm, is
administered by Foundation Scotland, an independent national grant-making charity with local presence; with all decisions on awards made by the Trustees of the Glenkens and District Trust, guided by fit with the Blackcraig Fund Strategy which very closely follows local Community Action Plans. The Fund is available to the communities of Balmaclellan, Balmaghie, Carsphairn, Corsock & Kirkpatrick Durham, Crossmichael & District, Dalry, Dunscore, Glencairn, The Royal Burgh of New Galloway and Kells Parish, and Parton.

Fiona Smith, Glenkens & District Trust Chair, said:
“The Trustees are very pleased that the Blackcraig Wind Farm
Community Fund has once again been able to support so many
important local projects across the area. We will soon be moving to two
funding rounds per year so keep an eye on our Facebook page
@glenkenstrust for news on new dates”

An announcement on closing dates for the next round of funding is expected in May 2022.