THE headquarters of a Runcorn scout group that has served the children of the community for nearly 100 years is about to undergo a major £11,000 revamp.

Weston Point Scout Group, located on Weston Road, has been awarded a grant to upgrade and renovate its Runcorn base as the historic building is showing signs of decades of wear and tear.

 Viridor, which operates the nearby Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) in Runcorn, has generously provided the Scout group with a grant of£11,500, which will now be used to make major improvements as well as buying new camping kit for use by the group’s 50-plus Scouts.

Established in 1931, Weston Point Scout Group has helped thousands of local children and young people develop core life skills with Scouts currently ranging from the ages of four to 18.

But the ageing headquarters is fit for a much-need of a makeover.

The donation, made available through Viridor’s We Share Community Fund, will help the Scout group make major improvements including installing new carpets and energy-efficient LED lighting as well as creating and furnishing a separate calming space for children and young people on the neurodivergent spectrum.

Speaking on the exciting renovation plans, John Frodsham, a Trustee of Weston Point Scout Group, said: “Everybody at the Weston Point Scout Group is incredibly grateful to Viridor for its generous donation.

“These improvements will have a long-lasting impact on our group and on our community as a whole.

“The improvements we’re able to make to our HQ thanks to Viridor’s funding will modernise it, make it more inclusive and create a facility that can be enjoyed by everyone. Once the works are complete, we plan to open up the building for wider use so it can ultimately become a resource for the local community.”

Operational since 2014, Viridor’s facility at Runcorn is one of the largest ERFs in the UK. Treating almost a million tonnes of non-recyclable waste each year, which arrives by both rail and road, the ERF generates enough electricity to power the equivalent of more than 154,500 homes each year.

Viridor has announced ambitious plans for a world-leading carbon capture project at Runcorn which will see around 900,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions removed from the atmosphere and locked away as part of HyNet, the UK’s leading industrial decarbonisation project.

The company has moved a step closer to making the UK’s first negative emissions project a reality, by agreeing a statement of principles with the UK Government’s Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ).

Viridor will now enter final negotiations with DESNZ, and a planning application for what will be one of the first carbon capture projects on an ERF anywhere in the world will be submitted to Halton Borough Council in 2025.

The Scouts’ grant was made as part of Viridor’s We Share Community Fund, which launched in late 2023. It represents an annual £300,000 fund which is allocated to projects across the country with a focus on community, involvement, education and sustainability.

Darren Bolton, plant manager at Viridor’s Runcorn ERF facility, added: “Our facility is a significant local employer and through our teams, we have strong links with the local community, so we’re thrilled that we have been able to support the Weston Point Scouts in this way.

“Their volunteers do such a brilliant job working with young people and helping them develop key life skills, and these improvements to their HQ will mean they can continue their good work for decades to come.”