Potash fund to inject millions locally


MILLIONS of pounds every year are to be pumped in to the Scarborough community as plans to set up a fund from the area’s proposed potash mine are revealed.

York Potash, the firm working to build a mine between Scarborough and Whitby, has announced this morning that a community fund will be set up to plough revenue from the mine directly in to local projects.

Following a £2 million initial start up donation, half a percent of revenue from the mine will be injected in to the fund annually.

Bosses at York Potash say this will equate to £3 million a year in the early stages, which would rise to £9 million a year when the mine is in full production.

The fund is to be called The York Potash Foundation, and will be run as an independent charity by a board of locally appointed trustees.

It has been set up specifically to support four main areas; education, skills and training, community facilites, and environmental initiatives.

Chris Fraser, managing director of Sirius Minerals, the parent company of York Potash, said: “We had always planned to put something like this in place as we want to extend the project into the community.

“We want the mine to have a positive, lasting legacy financially for the community.

“I look forward to the day when we have got someone graduating from university with a degree funded by The York Potash Foundation.

“We really want this to make a meaningful difference to people locally.”

Plans for the mine, which is set to create 1,500 jobs directly, were announced in January last year.

York Potash has since been carrying out test drilling in the area to determine the quality and amount of potash, as well as geographical studies to help locate the minehead.

The company hopes to submit the first planning application for the mine, which could be situated in the North York Moors National Park, by the end of year.

If permission is granted York Potash hopes to have the mine in production by 2017.