Aghalee Village Hall aims for green future

Aghalee Village Hall is on its way to a greener future thanks to a £22,000 grant to support a series of energy efficiency improvements.

The hall is to benefit from a new more efficient boiler, double glazing some windows, draft proofing and installation of solar power (PV units) on the roof of the main building.

The local group has already noticed the befits with the installation of the PV units reducing electrical costs along with their CO2 footprint, moving into the future the group will also benefit with the solar units providing a small annual income from renewables payments and selling electricity back to the grid.

Funding for the energy efficiency and improvement scheme was secured through the Alpha Programme, managed and administered by Groundwork NI. This funding stream distributes Landfill Tax Credits generated from Alpha Resource Managements’ Mullaghglass Landfill site near Castlerobin on the outskirts of Lisburn.

David Twigg, the Chairman commented: “When the hall was built in 1933, the only heating was an open fire. Thanks to the Alpha Programme we now have two new boilers, cavity and loft wall insulation, solar energy roof panels and new double glazed windows all of which will greatly enhance the use of the hall. Very many thanks to the Alpha Programme for enabling this work to be carried out.”

Melvyn Waddell, representing the Alpha Programme Steering Group remarked: “The Alpha Programme has supported Aghalee Village Hall with several funding grants over the last number of years and this recent work that has been completed will go a long way to ensuring the future sustainability of the hall for the benefit of all local residents.

“The Village Hall is a much valued and well used facility right in the heart of the local community and these improvements should make the space more welcoming and comfortable space.”

Over the last seven years the Alpha Programme has provided just over £2.5m in funding to over 90 projects for biodiversity and community based schemes within a ten-mile radius of the landfill site.

The programme is managed by Groundwork NI and redistributes the landfill tax credits to support great projects and initiatives to create bio-diversity or positively impact local communities.

For information on the programme, to download the application form and guidance notes or to check the closing dates for submitting applications visit www.groundworkni.org.uk or contact Mel Waddell at Groundwork NI on (028) 9074 9494 or email melvynwaddell@groundworkni.co.uk.