Residents urged to sign up to Rookery South Community Energy Initiative Image: Covanta

Ward councillor urges residents to sign up to the Rookery South Community Energy Initiative

At a Rookery South Community Energy Initiative (RSCEI) presentation to Cranfield Parish Council last night (20 February 2019), Cllr Robert Morris, ward councillor for Cranfield and Marston Moretaine, urged residents to sign up to the scheme.

He said:

“I strongly recommend that people apply for the scheme

“Because every penny that comes from this means that it’s a penny less that Covanta will have in their pockets.

“You are, technically, giving them a bloody nose by taking the money.”

The presentation was given by GrantScape Services marketing manager, Tina Knibbs.

Covanta appointed Salford-based GrantScape to manage RSCEI on its behalf. It is a charity that specialises in community benefit fund grant administration.

The RSCEI commits Covanta to contribute £60 (in the first year and index-linked in the following years) towards electricity costs of designated domestic households in the Rookery Pit area.

Registration is open to residents (as of 31 December 2018) of households in the parishes of Brogborough, Cranfield, Houghton Conquest, Lidlington, Marston Moretaine, Millbrook, Stewartby and Wootton.

Residents taking the payment are not endorsing the incinerator

Tina told the parish council that 10,000 letters had been sent out to eligible households. She added that she was aware of some negative comments about the scheme had been posted on social media.

She confirmed when responding to a question from Cranfield Parish Council chair, Delise Ball, that residents signing up to RSCEI are not showing that they agree with the incinerator being built.

Tina said:

“I think that if people sign up to it, it will be a good thing for them to get some money against their electricity bill.”

The payment is equivalent to 10% of the average, annual electricity bill in 2018. The payments will be indexed linked during the lifetime of the initiative, which is a 35 year financial commitment by Covanta.

RSCEI starts when the incinerator commences its commercial operation (estimated 2022). The scheme will come to an end before the 35 years is up if the site is taken out of commission early.

The cut-off date for eligibility was set to 31st December 2018. Tina said:

“The feeling is that anyone moving into the area [after this date] knows that the development is taking place. They’ll be alerted to when they buy their property.

“They are then moving in with that knowledge.”

Three ways to register before the deadline

Those who wish to claim need to register with GrantScape before 28 June 2019. Only those who have registered will be able to make an annual claim when the scheme starts.

Residents can register by responding to the letter, online or at one of the drop-in events:

Brogborough Village Hall
18 March 2019
20 May 2019
15:00 to 19:00

Millbrook Village Hall
28 March 2019
23 May 2019
15:00 to 18:00

Cranfield Village Hall
29 March 2019
24 May 2019
14:00 to 18:00

Marston Moretaine Sports Pavilion
25 March 2019
13 May 2019
14:00 to 18:00

Houghton Conquest Village Hall
27 March 2019
22 May 2019
15:00 to 19:00

Stewartby Village Hall
21 March 2019 12:00 to 16:00
14 May 2019 11:30 to 15:30

Lidlington Village Hall
22 March 2019
17 May 2019
14:00 to 16:00

Wootton Village Hall
20 March 2019
15 May 2019
13:45 to 17:45

More information on RSCEI can be found here: