COMMUNITIES living near Hinkley Point C nuclear power station are being encouraged to apply to a fund set up to help mitigate potential effects on residents.

West Somerset Council gave planning permission for the site preparatory works in January 2012 and work at the site is set to step up a gear this summer.

A spokesman for the council said: “A Community Impact Mitigation fund was negotiated at that time to be paid to West Somerset Council to administer on behalf of local communities in the district and neighbouring Sedgemoor at the start of the next stage of preparatory work on the site.

“The early phases of preparatory works were started in 2012 and now phase two is beginning, which involves preparing the land for Hinkley Point C nuclear power station.”

Initially during this phase of the preparatory works £3.5 million will be available for communities most affected by the work.

From the fund, £2 million will be allocated in West Somerset, with a further £1.5 million allocated in Sedgemoor - specifically £500,000 to Cannington and £1 million to Bridgwater.

A separate £500,000 is being specifically allocated to Stogursey, as the host parish for the site preparation works.

Nigel Cann, Hinkley Point C site construction director, said: “We're getting the second stage of the preparatory work started to help facilitate the main construction activities that would follow a final investment decision.

“We have worked very hard with communities and local authorities to maximise the benefits of the project such as investment, training and jobs, but also to minimise the impacts.

“We will continue to work closely with the councils to ensure that the funding is effectively deployed to help support our neighbours.”

The site preparation work includes fencing, drainage, excavation and earthworks.

Full details of how to apply to the Community Impact Mitigation fund can be found at