New board in place following EGM at West Side charity trust

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A shake up in the management of Horshader Community Development has taken place, following a vote of ‘No Confidence’ in the ‘standing board’, at an Extraordinary General Meeting held in early April.

A new board has now been established following the meeting, as the 150-strong membership of the community-owned charitable trust, decided they needed a change of direction.

The Trust was established in 2005 to run a community wind farm for the benefit of people in South Shawbost, Dalbeag and Dalmore on the west coast of Lewis.

It represents a small, close-knit community of 70 households and was the first community group in the Western Isles to develop a renewable energy revenue-generating project with a 900kW e wind energy converter.

The turbine is owned and operated by Horshader trading subsidiary Risort Power Generation Ltd, which gifts all of its profit to the Trust.

The group’s priorities stated on its website are to: “Use revenues from the wind turbine to fund projects that improve quality of life, increase employment prospects, protect the environment and encourage young people to stay in the area.”

The change of board members came following points raised at the organisation’s AGM in February when concerns from the community were raised. This was quickly followed by a request for an Extraordinary meeting, which was promoted on the organisation’s website, with a statement detailing: “An Extraordinary General Meeting has been requested following points raised at the AGM.

“It is intended by some members of the community to raise a vote of No-Confidence in the present Board.

“We would therefore request that all members attend to decide the future direction of the Horshader Community Development.

“The current directors have endeavoured for the best interests in Horshader and would like full participation from members at the EGM.”

One of the most recent projects the development group has been involved in are the efforts to commemorate the anniversary of the Iolaire disaster.

The Horshader group announced that they would help to fund a memorial in conjunction with An Lanntair arts centre in Stornoway.

Last year the group were also involved in helping to revive the native woodland of the Islands via the Hebridean Ark project, which hopes to have 100,000 more native saplings around Harris and Lewis by 2020.

The Gazette contacted Horshader Community Development this week for a statement in regards to the vote of ‘No Confidence’ and for details about new board members, however at the time of going to press, no information was available.