The new Gaelic Centre in Islay today welcomed the news that it has been included in a new £4 million Government-sponsored solar power initiative.
Ionad Chaluim Chille Ile (the Islay Columba Centre) is an education centre devoted to Gaelic language and culture, which incorporates community facilities. It is being developed in association with Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, the Gaelic College in Skye, and is presently expanding its premises.
The Islay Centre applied to be part of a £4 million Department of Trade and Industry project which would enable 18 public buildings across the UK to install sunslates and insulation, thereby permitting them to be powered by solar energy. It was confirmed today (Monday) that Islay's bid had been successful.
Project Manager Michelle MacLeod said on Monday:
"We are delighted that Ionad Chaluim Chille Ile's bid to participate in the DTI Field Trial for Photo-Voltaic roofing has been accepted. ICCI saw this as a unique opportunity to combine a symbolic yet tangible action for cultural and linguistic renaissance with the push to establish Islay as a centre for renewable energy."
George Mulvay of Gillespies Architects, the centre's designers, said:
"This is tremendous news. I have always thought it appropriate that this building, which is contributing to the renaissance of Gaelic language and culture, should be complemented by a 21st century sustainable renewable energy source."
UK Energy Minister Brian Wilson added:
"I am delighted that Ionad Chaluim Chille Ile is one of the 18 successful applicants from across the UK. This will not only be another feature of interest for the centre but will also make a significant contribution to the concept of 'green Islay', with a cluster of other renewable energy developments on the island."
For further information about this news release contact Dr Norman Gillies on 01471 888 000 or Angela Gillies on 01471 888 215