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As members of Community Energy Scotland and Development Trust Association Scotland, the NCDC is delighted to have had the opportunity to be part of a successful consortium bid to the Climate Challenge Fund, known as the Community Power Down.
27 mainly remote and rural areas from the Borders to Shetland are part of the Community Power Down network which will allow each of these communities to recruit a community carbon officers to help reduce carbon emissions. This represents a financial commitment of almost £1.5 million pounds from the Climate Challenge Fund.
From feedback received during community consultations to shape the Northmavine Development Plan and subsequent surveys carried out during a renewable energy audit for Northmavine, members of the community identified energy use and renewable energy as a key theme in the area.
A dedicated community carbon officer for Northmavine will now be recruited to work alongside the community to assess current energy use and consider reductions, while understanding the impacts and benefits for Northmavine. An action plan will be drawn up to highlight the community benefit that could be derived from carbon reduction measures such as developing the local food market, energy efficiency and small-scale community renewables.
Project Worker with the NCDC, Maree Hay, said: “As a peripheral rural area, the community of Northmavine is only too aware of fuel and energy costs and their impact. Energy savings and carbon reduction can provide real economic and environmental benefits for folk”. She went on to add, “We are delighted to be part of the Community Power Down consortium and look forward to using this award from the Climate Challenge Fund to make a difference to us as a community”.
The NCDC hope to begin the recruitment process during February, so if anyone on the forum knows someone who might be interested in the job, tell them to get in touch
As of 1st May 2008 the Northmavine Development Company will be known as the Northmavine Community Development Company. The new title is a bit of a tongue twister, so for day to day business we'll be known as the NCDC. On the face of it nothing will change - other than the name - and our aim is still to make Northmavine a more attractive place to live, work in or visit.
The main reason behind the change is to make the structure of the company more efficient and we are now a limited company without share capital with charitable status. Anyone who was a member of the NDC is now a member of the NCDC.
Incorporation of the company is complete and OSCR has approved our charitable status. The final fiddly bits of paperwork will be complete in the next few days and we'll be ready to begin work as the NCDC on 1st May.
We'll now be able to concentrate fully on the three main priority projects for Northmavine -
Community Business/Social Enterprise
The company still belongs to the folk of Northmavine and we're always blyde to hear ideas and thoughts from folk so please contact the office if you have anything you'd like to discuss.
Maree Hay, Project Worker - NCDC
Pam Abernethy, Admin Support Worker & Maree Hay, Project Worker.
The Northmavine Development Company (NDC) office at Greenbrae, Collafirth has seen a number of changes over recent months. Some employees have moved on to pastures new and the new recruits are busy getting up to speed with life at the NDC.
Alex Purbrick, admin worker, and author of the Health & Wellbeing Report left us some months ago to have a baby. Peerie Ronan is growing fast and is keeping Alex fairly busy. Ingrid Laurenson, author of the Tourism Action Plan and general office-doer-of-everything has sadly moved on to Orkney. Last but not least “wir Pat”, Pat Christie, has taken up a post in the Sooth End, nearer to home. Pat has shown a huge commitment to Northmavine during the past two and a half years and will be a real miss. The NDC would like to say a huge thank you to the lasses for the work they have done and wish them all well in their new ventures.
Pam Abernethy from Brae has taken over as admin support and will probably find her job description increasing as the weeks go by! Pam has office experience from a variety of posts and looks forward to working with the Northmavine community. The post of project worker has been filled by Maree Hay from Sullom. Maree has served as a director of the NDC for 2 years and has been instrumental in achieving the improvements at Mavis Grind. The new appointment has resulted in a vacant seat on the NDC board of directors.
The NDC have spent the past two and a half years gathering ideas and information from the community to inform the Northmavine Development Plan and reports have been published on Tourism, Health and Renewable Energy. The company is now turning its attention to future sustainability and how it can begin to operate as a sustainable community company.
Maree said, “I feel this is an exiting time for Pam and me to join the NDC workforce. In the beginning it was essential to find out how Northmavine folk saw the future. Much time has also been spent establishing a base line, by researching existing facilities and amenities in Northmavine. The challenge now is to look at which projects are able to generate employment and an income for the community.”
Initiative at the Edge was a designation - a status if you will, or perhaps more like a badge, that was awarded, by the Scottish Executive, to areas within Scotland that were seen as needing regeneration - socially and economically.
Northmavine, because of its more isolated situation in Shetland, its small and declining population and the problems it faces with regard to housing, employment and services - all really problems related to population size – was given Initiative at the Edge status in 2004. This lasted until March 2009.
The status basically meant two things. First of all, the money to employ a full time Project Worker, run an office and do the administration, and secondly, there was, because of the status, the opportunity to obtain funding from grant aiding bodies for projects to help reverse decline.
The Northmavine Development Company (now known as Northmavine Community Development Company or NCDC), which was already in existence, was taken over - with their agreement! - by a community group made up of local volunteers set up to administer the Initiative at the Edge programme.
It was really up to the community of Northmavine to say what it wanted this programme to be. The Company conducted community consultation throughout Northmavine, produced a Development Plan based on the results of the consultations, and has overseen the setting up of a number of projects based on the priorities identified. It continues to consult folk on issues affecting the area - like changes in crofting and provision for young people in the area.