Community Shares Scotland, the body formed in May to help communities invest in their own futures, has supported the launch of two more community share offers.
Urras Energy Society Ltd, in South Galston on Lewis, and Sunart Community Renewables in Strontian, Lochaber, were launched after a recent community shares roadshow in Leverburgh.
Alastair Macleod, local development officer at North Uist Development Company, said: “The meeting allowed me to relook at two projects which could have remained dormant if I had not attended. We are now enthusiastic about taking these forward.”
Kelly McIntrye, programme manager of Community Shares Scotland, said: “This is an exciting time for community shares enterprises and these two energy announcements reinforce the fact that there is a distinct community drive to help build employment and the economy.
“The roadshow last week in Harris, with over 30 people attending, demonstrated the enthusiasm for this type of community-sourced funding. There is no doubt we will see this interest take hold across Scotland.”
Neil Mackinnon and Holly Magee, of Urras Energy Society Ltd, said they would continue to work with Community Shares Scotland to promote their share offer locally and nationally.
“CSS has been excellent at providing us with resources and contacts which have been very useful in expanding our reach and knowledge,” they said.
Urras Energy Society is looking to raise money to install two 900kw wind turbines at Ballantrushal. These will be connected to the local power grid, running alongside an existing turbine that was installed in December 2013.
A community benefit society, Sunart Community Renewables has also launched its share offer under the guidance of Community Shares Scotland. The project is an initiative of the local charity Sunart Community Company, which identified the potential for a community-run micro hydroelectric scheme on the Allt nan Cailleach burn. The scheme is expected to generate revenue for the local community by selling hydro-electricity to the national grid.
Dale Meegan, project manager at Sunart Community Renewables, said: “We are excited about this opportunity to raise money for a community-owned project which will bring in regular income for our community and contribute to the drive for more renewable energy.
“The team brought extensive experience and knowledge of successful community share offers from around the UK. They supported us every step of the way, with setting up an appropriate community organisation for making a share offer, as well as marketing, promotions, legal and financial advice.”
Dave Thompson, MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, said: “I am delighted to support this ‘first’ for Lochaber. Community shares are an excellent new way of raising money for a community venture as well as bringing good returns for investors.”
Community Shares Scotland has so far been approached by 16 new community groups interested in exploring the community shares options for their projects, which include renewable energy projects, community buy-outs of local swimming pools and community health initiatives.
In this article
- Alastair Macleod
- Community ownership
- Dale Meegan
- Dave Thompson
- energy announcements
- Holly Magee
- Kelly McIntrye
- Low-carbon economy
- Neil Mackinnon
- North Uist Development Company
- Renewable energy
- renewable energy projects
- Sunart Community Company
- Sunart Community Renewables
- Urras Energy Society
- United Kingdom
- Top Stories
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