Home   News   Article

Ardersier Port owners create million-pound fund for communities around Ardersier and Nairnshire

By Federica Stefani

Register for free to read more of the latest local news. It's easy and will only take a moment.

Click here to sign up to our free newsletters!
View of Ardersier Port. Haventus, who own the port, are seeking to create a Community Benefit Fund for communities in the area.
View of Ardersier Port. Haventus, who own the port, are seeking to create a Community Benefit Fund for communities in the area.

The company behind the redevelopment of Ardersier Port is creating a million-pound fund to benefit surrounding communities.

Haventus has announced work is in progress to set up the community benefit fund, which will be managed by independent charity Foundation Scotland.

Providing £100,000 each year over the next decade the fund will be open to communities in Croy, Ardersier and Petty, Nairn West and Cawdor.

It is hoped to start making the first round of donations this autumn.

The fund is set to be discussed at an event open to the public at Ardersier's War Memorial Hall on March 13.

Haventus chief executive Lewis Gillies said: "What’s important to me is that the funding is targeted to the initiatives and needs identified by the local community itself – in that way I believe the resources of the fund can make the biggest difference.

"As the relatively new owners of Ardersier Port, as we continue to develop our energy transition facility, we’ve enjoyed great support from our local community.

"We’re very grateful for that, and l hope that the fund can be an important next step in building our contribution to local causes.”

Foundation Scotland works through a legal framework which will tie the funds to the areas with a "peer system" to ringfence funds.

Debbie Herron, community fund adviser for Foundation Scotland, said: "The event on March 13 will be an open invitation for anyone interested to come in and learn more on Foundation Scotland, how we'll administer the fund and we'll also invite people to join a working group to develop the fund.

Debbie Herron - Community Funds Adviser for Foundation Scotland.
Debbie Herron - Community Funds Adviser for Foundation Scotland.

"The working group can have community councillors, individuals that want to be engaged and involved, representatives of different organisations such as development trusts – it's a very broad panel, and recruitment is very open. We want to engage as many people as possible in the process.

"The process is very rooted in the communities and community-led, and can make a really significant impact to groups and organisations who might otherwise not reach funds elsewhere.

"Particularly if you have communities that have clear plans on what they want to do, the investment of these funds can make a difference for these communities in being able to deliver what they want and what they need."

Culloden and Ardersier councillor Trish Robertson said: "The fact that money will probably be available this year is fantastic.

Trish Robertson. Picture: James Mackenzie.
Trish Robertson. Picture: James Mackenzie.

"They are moving quickly on it and it's excellent news. To actually have benefit out of something which is going to affect the area to a big degree over the next who knows how many years is good and exciting news.

"Ardersier certainly has plenty of projects which the community would have liked to see done recently, and many will be coming up – from refurbishing community spaces to boosting successful projects.

"We need to sit down and think where to go and what can be done. The ideas need to come from the community – they will have work to do to get this right.

"We need to stress that this is an opportunity –we need to make sure that we have people engaged right at the start, knowing that this is the beginning, and nothing has been decided."

Nairn Councillor Barbara Jarvie also welcomed the announcement that West Nairn and Cawdor will be included in the areas benefitting from the fund.

Barbara Babs Jarvie, Scottish Conservative and Unionist. Picture: James Mackenzie.
Barbara Babs Jarvie, Scottish Conservative and Unionist. Picture: James Mackenzie.

She said: "That's very generous, it's great that they are reaching out to the communities as a return cycle. Getting local employment will be good, it looks like a sign for a conscientious employer.

"I wish them the best of luck, it could be a great thing for Nairn."

Foundation Scotland can be contacted for more information at enquiries@foundationscotland.org.uk – or find out more at foundationscotland.org.uk

Do you want to respond to this article? If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More