Get all your news in one place.
100’s of premium titles.
One app.
Start reading
Edinburgh Live
Edinburgh Live
Katie Williams

East Lothian residents urged to apply for £1m energy fund as applications open

East Lothian residents are being urged to apply for an energy fund that can help them heat their homes this winter.

From a partnership between Community Windpower, Advice Direct Scotland and East Lothian Council, the new £1 million energy fund open for applications to anyone who is struggling to with their bills.

This payment, which will, in most cases cover two months, will be a grant and does not have to be paid back. It is due to run until the end of March 2023 but applicants can't use it to cover historial debt.

READ NEXT - Meet the Midlothian good samaritan helping struggling families this Christmas

This specific fund is supported directly from Community Windpower’s onshore wind farms near Aikengall. Grant applications can be made by individuals through a new dedicated website,, while ‘referral partners’ such as the council, charities and local housing associations can apply on behalf of vulnerable people.

Anyone on means-tested benefits can apply directly, while referral partners can also act on behalf of anyone on a low income or facing financial hardship.

National charity Advice Direct Scotland, which also runs the Scottish Government’s Home Heating Support Fund, will make payments for electricity usage by issuing PayPoint or Post Office vouchers or sending the money direct to the supplier for those with a credit meter.

Only one application can be made by, or on behalf of, a household – and in most cases a grant will be awarded for electricity use for two months.

However, additional payments can be made based on individual circumstances, such as the number of children in a household or evidence of illness or disability.

This comes as many are facing a tough winter as energy bills have soared since October. Although the energy price guarantee has capped how much people can pay per unit of gas and electricity, many are still having to choose between heating and eating. The current unit prices can vary by region and payment type but for electricity average at 34p per kWh and for gas average at 10.3p per kWh for direct debit customers in Great Britain with typical energy consumption. This totals to an average yearly bill of £2,500.

Rod Wood, Community Windpower’s managing director, said: “We are delighted to open this energy funding scheme and contribute £1 million for local communities in East Lothian just when help is most needed, before the winter period.

“Scotland’s renewable energy future is bright with potentially 30-40 GW to be built to deliver energy security and the green hydrogen revolution and we would urge the Scottish renewables industry to follow our lead and commit to to support vulnerable families across the whole of Scotland.

“This will deliver an additional £200 million per annum into the Scottish economy as well as supporting the Scottish Government to insulate homes, provide low carbon heating systems, and create new jobs in the green energy sector.”

Pamela Stewart, deputy chief executive of Advice Direct Scotland, said: “This fund will provide thousands of households in East Lothian with hundreds of pounds towards their energy bills this winter.

“For many people, it will prevent them being forced to choose between heating and eating.

“We are proud to be administering this fund on behalf of Community Windpower, and our teams are ready to ensure people swiftly get the financial help being made available.”

East Lothian Council leader Norman Hampshire said: “The rising cost of living is having a real impact on people in communities around the country.

“The launch of the new energy fund is undoubtedly a welcome addition to the support available and very timely given the colder weather expected throughout the winter months.

“It complements the range of initiatives established by the council to help individuals and families in the county who are financially vulnerable at this challenging time.”

Paul McLennan, MSP for East Lothian, said: “After months of discussion with Community Windpower and East Lothian Council, I am extremely pleased to see applications for the East Lothian Energy Fund open.

“The fund comes at a time when those most affected by rising energy costs in East Lothian are most vulnerable.

“The support will make a huge difference this winter. It really is a game changer that I hope will go some way in preventing families from having to make a choice between a hot meal or heating their home.

“I commend Community Windpower and Advice Direct Scotland for their recognition of the need to go further to support people in the cost-of-living crisis and I hope to see similar schemes rolled out across Scotland."

Full details are available at

How are you coping with the rising cost of energy? Let us know at


Ex-Hibs striker Leigh Griffiths arrested during raid on home amidst gambling probe

Edinburgh sex workers speak of hardship caused by council ban on strip clubs

Former Edinburgh pupil abused at elite private school awarded £450k in damages

Meet the Midlothian good samaritan helping struggling families this Christmas

West Lothian mum announces her own death after cancer mistaken for 'trapped nerve'

Sign up to read this article
Read news from 100’s of titles, curated specifically for you.
Already a member? Sign in here
Related Stories
Top stories on inkl right now
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Already a member? Sign in here
Our Picks
Fourteen days free
Download the app
One app. One membership.
100+ trusted global sources.