BOSSES at the Whalley Community Hydro Project are hoping to start construction next month.

The group have applied for a loan from The Charity Bank for £400,000 to go towards funding the project and, if accepted, it’s hoped that work can begin by the end of March.

It has also been confirmed that just under £400,000 has been raised through selling shares in the community project and bosses are appealing to residents to apply for shares if they have not done so yet.

Due to conditions on the project from the Environment Agency, work in the River Calder can’t start until after May 1 because of fish migration protection.

The power house, which will generate electricity from the river, will use the movement of the river’s water to create electricity.

The power will then be fed into the National Grid and generate money for other local renewable energy projects.

Chris Gathercole, a director at Whalley Community Hydro, said: “Getting the bank loan confirmed would be a major step forward but we will have to see what the bank say next week.

“Shares are still available in the project and I would urge everyone to get involved in this community scheme.”

More details on the share sell off can be found at www.whalleyhydro