Rotary hears the benefits of community turbine

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The Rotary Club of Oldmeldrum welcomed David Murray from the Udny Community Council and Trust as its guest speaker at a recent meeting.

David told the club about how the Udny Community wind turbine project – the first fully community owned wind turbine on the UK mainland - had come into being and had overcome initial scepticism within the community.

A group established to investigate the viability of the project had met over a period of five years, identifying three sites.

A further challenge, he added, had been raising the funds required to bring the project to fruition. Some £500,000 towards the overall cost had been raised through the Big Lottery, LEADER funding and other sources, with the balance coming mainly from loans to be repaid from the turbine revenues.

The 800Kw turbine is now generating more electricity than had originally been anticipated. Even after one year there was, David said, around £100,000 of clear profit, which is forecast to rise to £250,000 each year after ten years, once the costs of the turbine have been repaid. The proceeds from the turbine have been earmarked to benefit the Parish of Udny residents and community organisations.