Green energy supplies £1m funding for community projects

Knoydart A hydro-electric plant in Knoydart is one of the groups to be awarded funding

Community projects across the Highlands have been given £1m from a charity funded by onshore wind farms

SSE's Sustainable Development Fund aims to help charity and non-profit organisations across the Highlands.

More than 100 applications were submitted to the fund, with 29 grants then being awarded.

Grants were decided by an independent panel which included former Scottish First Minister Lord Jack McConnell.

The single largest award was of £225,000 to Scottish Canals to redevelop their visitor centre in Fort Augustus.

Other projects to have been awarded funding included £43,330 to the Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust for new renewable housing and an award of £75,000 for an upgrade of an off-grid hydro-electric power scheme in Knoydart.

Lord McConnell, chairman of the SSE Sustainable Development Fund, said: "At the launch of the fund, we asked for project ideas that were both sustainable in their outcomes and genuinely transformational to the local area.

"From the tip of Caithness to the sound of Mull, the successful awards will create jobs, revitalise open spaces and strengthen communities."

He added: "I look forward to seeing the benefit this round of funding will bring to the Highlands and to reviewing an equally high standard of applications when the fund reopens in late 2015."

A full list of the community projects which have been awarded grants can be found on the SSE website.

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