Power to the People

On Tuesday 22 May, Ardentinny Renewables Trust (ART), SCO 47215, held its first AGM in the village hall with an attendance of 25.  Douglas Menzies (Chair), Bill Tierney (Treasurer), Neil Robinson (Secretary), Rob Bray, Jeanette Reilly, Kenneth Evans and Jenny McLundie were proposed and seconded as returning trustees for another year.

The Chair reported that Ardentinny’s two hydro energy projects, operated by Hydrover are producing a total of 750,000 kw which is the equivalent of the annual electricity supply for approximately 170 homes. In addition there is the scheme operated by local farmer Ross MacArthur.

The projects are required to give 5% of Feed-in Tariff annually to the local community. Therefore ART, established to manage and distribute these funds for community benefit, is about to receive just over £7,000. Lifetime Trust membership is free to all residents (contact ardentinnyreneweablestrust@gmail.com for application details) and qualifies them to apply for Trust funds so long as the project benefits the community. Members will be notified when the funds arrive and project funding applications can be submitted. The secretary will then email members with details of the applications received. Thereafter, the trustees will meet quarterly to consider these and decide on which should succeed.

Project suggestions were invited from the floor and ranged from funding the cleaning of the public toilets; benches along the river walk; folk festivals; a play park at the beach; buying land for housing to attract young families; match funding larger projects; to investing in another village hydro project for a much larger return. 

The next AGM will be held in May 2019 and the first quarterly meeting of the Trustees will be in August. Trustee meetings will not be open to the public.



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Ardentinny Renewables Trust Membership Drive

It was reported at the current community council’s final meeting that Ardentinny Renewables Trust (ART) expects very soon to be in receipt of the first tranche of funds from the village’s two hydro energy projects.

ART secretary, Neil Robinson, said they anticipate receiving approximately £5,000 from Hydrover and £2,000 from Ross MacArthur’s project by the end of May, 2018 and that the Trust will be circulating a newsletter to all residents within the next two weeks in an effort to encourage and increase Trust membership.

Any Ardentinny resident with a community project may apply for funds from the Trust but must be a member to do so. Membership is free and how to apply for a grant will be explained at the upcoming ART AGM on 22 May 2018, to which all are welcome.

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Ardentinny hydro scheme comes on stream

The Chair of Ardentinny Renewables Trust (ART), Dougie Menzies, has confirmed that the Hydro Scheme at Baron Turner is now up and running with both turbines operating and connection to the grid finalised. He reported that the company Hydrover says the initial costs should be paid off in five years and the scheme’s lifespan is expected to be 25 years.

ART is now registered with the Scottish Charity Regulator OSCR (registered no. SCO47215) with its main purpose being  ‘to advance the protection of the environment through the promotion and sustainable production of energy from renewable sources….. and to support rural regeneration in the Ardentinny Community Council geographical area through the management  and distribution of funds accruing from the production of renewable energy for community benefit.

 

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Hydro Schemes in Ardentinny

Hydro pipework being installed in June this year

Hydro pipework being installed at Baron Turner in June this year

Chair of Ardentinny Renewables Trust, Dougie Menzies, provided the following update on the hydro schemes currently in progress: ‘The two hydro schemes being built up at Baron Turner are progressing well and the company (Hydrover) have completed all the pipework and built the turbine house. The final part is the connection to the grid and Scottish Hydro are awaiting the transformer to enable this to happen. Hopefully this will be in the next few weeks. The transformer is coming from Australia and was ordered in January.’

Dougie also informed that a new constitution has been drawn up to enable the Trust to be registered as a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO), and is ready to be submitted.

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Ardentinny Renewables Status

Ardentinny Renewables Trust (ART) is not yet a Trust, according to the group’s secretary, Neil Robinson. At the April Ardentinny Community Council meeting he reported that slight changes were to be made to the Constitution which may require a solicitor’s stamp. It was also thought that the group might become a SCIO, i.e., Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation ‘which is a legal form unique to Scottish charities’ (http://www.oscr.org.uk/charities/becoming-a-charity). He said that members will be emailed with the relevant information.

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Ardentinny Renewables Trust – project update

At the October Community Council meeting, Chair of Ardentinny Renewables Trust (ART), Dougie Menzies, reported that a planning application has been submitted to the National Park and SEPA for two renewable energy projects and that SEPA says it could take up to 4 months for a response. Apparently some of the pipes will need to be above ground and therefore covered with hessian and moss.

Hydrover, the development company, had quoted a potential income to the village of £8000 per annum for the two sites. However, that was prior to a 40% cut in the Feed In Tariff by the UK Government which will have a knock-on effect on income to the community. However, it was still considered to be a worthwhile project.

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Ardentinny Renewables Trust

At Ardentinny Community Council’s August meeting, Neil Robinson reported that the Hydro Steering Group had now been replaced by Ardentinny Renewables Trust whose Office Bearers are as follows: Chair – Dougie Menzies; Vice Chair – Rob Bray; Treasurer – Bill Tierney; and Secretary – Neil Robinson.

The Trust’s Constitution ‘was adopted at the meeting held on 25 day of May 2015′ and has been published on the village notice board, appendix 2 of which invites members of the community aged 18 and over to apply to join the Trust.

Download Ardentinny Renewables Trust Constitution.

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