RESIDENTS in the Ettrick and Yarrow valleys will soon be getting a little help when it comes to being smarter with energy.

The Ettrick and Yarrow Community Development Company, which has more than 230 members, is currently recruiting a Community Smart Energy Development Officer.

And they will be based at headquarters on Philiphaugh Estate near Selkirk.

The new officer will spearhead a push for smart energy use in the rural communities.

Funding is in place to run a demonstration project which includes buying an electric people carrier, installing charging points, installing smart storage heaters in a community venue, completing feasibility studies on renewable energy options.

Vicky Davidson from the Ettrick and Yarrow Community Development Company told us: “The aim of the the Ettrick and Yarrow Community Development Company is to keep people living and working in the valleys and make sure the valleys have a sustainable future .

“We are working on a number of projects including buying and converting a redundant steading near Ettrickbridge to provide affordable housing.

“The smart energy project is funded primarily by the SPEN Green Economy Fund and is going to explore the future opportunities from smart energy within the valleys.

“At present no new renewable generators can be connected into the grid within the valleys due to capacity issues – part of the research into how a smart grid could work locally will be about looking at how we can match the power used within the valleys with the power generated within the valleys.”

The Ettrick and Yarrow Community Development Company are holding a public meeting to launch the smart energy project in Yarrow Hall, Yarrow Feus, at 7.30pm on Wednesday, April 10.

Applications for the post of Community Smart Energy Development Officer should be made to