Ardrossan's Scout group has been awarded £93,000 to transform to their community hall.

The planned renovations include retrofitting the 1960s building, in Kilmeny Terrace, to add insulation and new glazed windows, as well as installing an air source heat pump to sustainably warm the hall  all round.

The 1st Ardrossan 15th Ayrshire Scouts will also incorporate learnings from the project into its current Global Issues and Community Impact badges to involve young people in the project and teach Scouts, Cubs, Beavers, and Explorers about the importance of reaching net zero.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: The Scout Hall

The group is one of the recipients of SP Energy Networks’ Net Zero Fund – a £5 million funding pot designed to support vulnerable communities across Central and Southern Scotland and ensure no one is left behind as the country moves towards to net zero emissions.

Several organisations from across the local area also make use of the hall including Drum4URlife, an adult drumming group aimed at promoting positive health and wellbeing, and RAMH North Ayrshire Wellbeing and Recovery College.

The planned renovations are expected to boost weekly visitor numbers to more than 200, allowing more charities and community organisations to use the facilities.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Ardrossan Scout Group

The eco-friendly upgrades are set to result in a saving in energy outgoings which will be reinvested back into the running and maintenance of the hall to ensure it remains an affordable hire space for the community.

Alan Donaldson, chair of the 1st Ardrossan 15th Ayrshire Scout Group's board of trustees, said: “Since it was built in the 1960s, our hall has hosted a huge number of weekly groups, events and meetings and we’re proud to be able to offer people a place to connect and make memories.  

“These modernisations are much-needed and will be transformational for the space – allowing us to reduce our emissions, cut our bills and boost our visitor numbers.

"Most importantly though, is the knowledge we’ll pass on to our Scouts through the updated badges, helping young people learn about sustainability and involving them in positive conversations around climate action.

"We’re incredibly grateful to SP Energy Networks’ Net Zero Fund for their support.”

Scott Mathieson, network planning and regulation director at SP Energy Networks, said: “Both my daughter and I were fortunate enough to take part in the Scout movement.

"For me, it opened a world I wouldn’t have had access to otherwise, and for my daughter, as a young woman, it gave her the confidence to pursue a career in engineering.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Ardrossan Scout Group

"That’s why I’m so proud our business can make a contribution to essential venues like this community hall used by the Scouts. Venues like this are at the heart of local communities across Scotland and it’s crucial that these vital facilities are able to be decarbonised.  

“The planned renovations will completely transform the building and enable more groups to make use of the hall while also contributing to a reduction in both energy bills and emissions.

"Personally, I’m also delighted they’re able to include the learnings from the project to form two Scout badges involving young people in environmental discussions.”  

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Ardrossan Scout Group

He added: “SPEN’s Net Zero Fund is currently accepting more applications as part of its second round, and we’d love to hear from eligible charities and community groups looking for help with their own net zero plans.”