Charitable, community and voluntary groups across the Scottish Borders, and from the parish of Gifford, are benefitting from grants from the Fallago Environment Fund.
The fund was established by EDF Energy Renewables and Roxburghe Estates as part of the Fallago Rig Windfarm development.
It shares the benefits of the windfarm through financial support for local and regional projects that enhance the area’s built, natural and cultural heritage.
A group of path-making volunteers from Earlston, an organisation that promotes art in the Borders and a therapeutic garden for the elderly in Kelso received a total of £43,494 in the latest round of grants.
Earlston Paths Group received £8,494 to improve the circular footpaths along the Leader Water and provide interpretive panels for walkers about the wildlife and historic buildings they can discover along the routes.
Border Arts Development was awarded £15,000 to help promote art in the region. The organisation runs a number of events to showcase the region’s creative talent, including the forthcoming Borders Art Fair, which will be held place in Springwood Park in Kelso next March.
And an award of £20,000 went to Queen’s House care home in Kelso, for the creation of a therapeutic garden, where the residents can relax and reminisce and where activities that promote wellbeing through activity can take place.
In all, 41 Borders projects have received grants totalling £738,863 since the scheme was set up in 2012.
The grants have also enabled the projects to lever additional match-funding from other organisations, resulting in more than £4 million in additional resources for the region.
Fund chairman, Gareth Baird, said: “Our aim is to use windfarm-generated funds to enhance the environment across the Borders, making the region an even better place to live, work and visit. We’re extremely pleased that the Fallago Environment Fund has been able to provide the funding needed to further these extremely worthwhile initiatives and look forward to seeing their progress and the benefits they bring.”
Grant applications for the fund, administered by the Tweed Forum, are assessed twice a year, with application deadlines of 1st September and 1st March.
Further information on the application process can be found at www.tweedforum.org/fallago or by calling 01896 849723.
Photo: Gareth Baird, Chairman, Fallago Environment Fund, presents a cheque to members of Earlston Paths Group. Also pictured are Tom McGhee, Bill Bryson, Ian Gibb and Ruth Gregory). Photo by Paul Dodds.