Two Dorset parish councils receive £60,000 ‘windfall’

Two Dorset parish councils are celebrating a £60,000 windfall.

Eco Sustainable Solutions has donated £30,000 each to West Parley Parish Council and Hurn Parish Council.

The donations follow planning approval for new solar farms covering 291 acres on land bordering Eco’s Parley site.

Work is now underway on the schemes which will eventually provide low carbon ‘green’ electrical power for about 14,000 homes.

Trelawney Dampney, Eco’s Managing Director, said: “I feel strongly that businesses such as ourselves have a wider responsibility than just to make money.

“We work closely with local residents and elected representatives and, while we do not always see eye to eye on every issue, we value the importance of local democracy in action.

“There are no strings attached to these donations. All we ask is that the money is spent on projects and initiatives which will benefit as many people as possible in the local community.”

John Cullen, Chairman of West Parley Parish Council, said the £30,000 donation was a “very generous” sum.

He added: “We have discussed and agreed on a number of projects which will receive funding.

“These include improvements in the public car park by the country club with new drainage, re-surfacing where needed and new lights.

“We’re also putting fencing round the new children’s play area, which will keep it dog free, and hope to give more money to community groups. This will be on top of the amounts already allocated by the parish council to local organisations.”

Margaret Phipps, Chairman of Hurn Parish Council, said the Eco cheque was the largest single donation received by the council.

“We’re very pleased to receive this money and very grateful to Trelawney and Eco Sustainable Solutions. It will make a big difference.

“We have not yet allocated the money to anything specific. It’s likely we will ask residents via our newsletter whether they have any local schemes we should consider supporting,” added Cllr Phipps.

Eco annually processes 150,000 tonnes of material at Parley, the UK’s leading purpose-built site for organics recycling and renewable energy. End products include turf, enriched topsoil, compost and woodchip.

Eco was founded in 1993 and now employs 46 people with an annual turnover of £11 million.

The company currently handles 250,000 tonnes of organic material each year across four facilities.