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Rumbling Bridge Community Hydro Society (RBCHS) has given a grant of £10,000 to local charity Broke Not Broken to support its work on alleviating fuel poverty.
Elspeth King, a Director of RBCHS commented, “The Board of Rumbling Bridge CHS is very pleased to be able to assist Broke Not Broken in their work on fuel poverty. This grant of £10,000 follows on from one of £5,000 we gave in April 2022. It is fitting for us as a Community Energy Society to support this crucial work in helping those affected by high energy costs.”
Annie McCormack, chair of Broken Not Broken, said, “Broke Not Broken are delighted to accept this donation of £10,000 from the Rumbling Bridge Community Hydro Society to go towards energy payments for people locally experiencing fuel poverty. Being supported by a local project like this shows us a way forward that we believe is sustainable and creates the kind of Scotland we want to live in. “
This year the charity has seen a 70% increase in foodbank usage and over 50% increase in fuel payments over the year so far (up until end Oct), within Kinross-shire alone. Payments made towards energy costs total over £15,000 and the average payment made was £129. This includes not only gas and electric but also oil.
All of the charity’s fuel payments are made through referral. These referrals come through a variety of channels including Health and Social Care partnerships, Schools, Doctors, Women’s Aid, SAAFA, PKC Helpline, Housing departments and tenancy support through Perth & Kinross Council, Hillcrest and Caledonia Housing Associations. Broke Not Broken also works with The Heat Project based in Blairgowrie to give unbiased expert advice on energy, bills and how to get the most for one’s money.
Accompanying Photograph shows Elspeth King of Rumbling Bridge CHS (left) and Annie McCormack of Broke Not Broken (right)
19th November 2021
Rumbling Bridge Community Hydro Society has awarded a total of £21,000 in grants to local facilities and events from its surplus profits made in 2020/21. Grants ranging from £500 to £5,000 were awarded to the Crook of Devon Hall, the Coronation Hall in Muckhart, the Moubray Hall in Powmill Fossoway Church Hall and Muckhart Parish Church Hall. The Muckhart Horticultural Society and the Fossoway Flower Show also benefited.
These grants are to support local village halls and events which have been adversely affected by a lack of income due to difficulties caused by the Covid pandemic restrictions.
Hugh Wallace, Chair of the Rumbling Bridge Community Hydro Society Board said: “We are delighted to have been able to award these grants. This brings the total donated to local community projects by the Society to over £100,000 since the hydro scheme launched in 2016″.
The weather isn’t always favourable to us in the renewable energy industry. Recent storms and heavy rain have brought its share of challenges. Firstly, in December a large tree fell into the weir that caused a restriction to the weir cleaning. Our maintenance team were quick to take action and immediately cut away any problematic branches keeping the impact on production as low as possible.
February brought some heavy rain and thunder storms which resulted in further damage. The rainfall caused flooding which meant that there was a lot of sediment built up which had gauged out parts of the river bank on the pipeline side both up and downstream. These were repaired using sediment as backfill as this contained some surprisingly large stones. This was then sealed off with concrete to hopefully prevent a reoccurrence. We also noticed a bent spline shaft on the valve for closing off the penstock which presumably was the result of being hit by a log. This has now been replaced too.
In early August we were hit by a lightening strike which knocked out the weir cleaner motor, drive and head pond sensor cable that links to the powerhouse. Repairs saw us out of action for a week but overall August was still well ahead of budget.
We’ve also had a new G59 meter delivered as part of the UK electricity industry’s changing protocols. As the existing one actually complied, it was re programmed with the new one left as a spare. Hopefully the more accommodating settings will result in less outages and damage due to grid issues. Time will tell but so far so good!