The Neilston Community Wind Farm: Utilising Neilston's natural wind resource to deliver the Neilston 2030 Vision.

Completed in 2013, the four turbine wind farm will significantly reduce the Town's carbon footprint and will generate substantial revenue from the sale of green electricity. In turn, this will fund many projects identified in the Neilston 2030 Vision.

Recognising that developing a wind farm is technically and financially challenging, Neilston Development Trust (through its trading subsidiary NDT Trading Ltd) formed a joint venture with specialist renewables developer, Carbon Free Developments Limited (through its subsidiary Carbon Free Neilston Limited).

Carbon Free was responsible for the technical, development, planning and construction aspects of the project. Carbon Free funded and undertook all planning risk. The community only invested in the project after planning consent was obtained. Carbon Free was also responsible for sourcing the bank finance required to build the wind farm and helped the Development Trust in sourcing finance to fund its equity contribution to the joint venture.

The wind farm development was a unique collaborative effort. The structure was designed to ensure that the Neilston community secured loan funding to invest in the wind farm and will receive a share (28.3%) of the pre-tax profits generated by the wind farm. Subscribing on identical terms meant the Development Trust took the same operational risks as Carbon Free, but it now also shares in the operational rewards.