Warming up thanks to a funding boost

The centre will put the money to good use installing solar panels and upgrading the heating to keep everyone who uses the facilities warm and toasty.
The centre will put the money to good use installing solar panels and upgrading the heating to keep everyone who uses the facilities warm and toasty.

Isle of Lewis based, Taigh Dhonnchaidh Music and Arts Centre have scooped £12,000 funding from the M&S Energy Community Energy Fund, beating five projects in the region to win the top prize.

Taigh Dhonnchaidh won the funding with 2865 public votes.

This follows a six-week long campaign by the organisation calling on the local community to show its support after it was shortlisted for the national renewable community energy competition in July.

Taigh Dhonnchaidh is a music and arts centre that aims to preserve local, traditional music and culture for the present and future generations.

The winning funds will be used to install solar panels and upgrade their heating system, helping to reduce annual energy costs, C02 emissions and ultimately result in a more energy efficient venue.

The improved heating will also help to preserve important musical instruments and historical musical artefacts, affected by damp and cold.

Mary Duff, Secretary of Taigh Dhonnchaidh, said: “I have been overwhelmed by the support Taigh Dhonnchaidh have received during this funding bid and feel truly blessed to live in such a fantastic community.

“However, equally crucial in our campaign, was the support the community amassed from afar, which was truly an example of community spirit at its best.

“The funding will make such a difference to our group and help us to continue providing and improving our community events.

“I would like to say a huge thanks to everyone who has voted and helped support us during this funding bid and would also like to thank M&S for their support.”

2017 marks the third year of the M&S Energy Community Energy Fund, which donates up to £300,000 to support community renewable energy projects and technologies across the UK.