Arran’s MSP Kenneth Gibson is delighted that the SNP Government has awarded £3,612,000 to Arran Development Trust (ADT) through an Offer in Principle Grant from the Rural & Islands Housing Fund. This is the largest grant awarded to a community group from this fund.
The grant will be used as part of an £8.5 million financial package to provide 43 affordable rental houses of between 1 & 4 bedrooms across two sites in Lamlash and will help address the lack of affordable housing on the island.
ADT will also take forward plans to provide 14 serviced self-build plots in Lamlash, Arran and has already received over 60 Expressions of Interest.
The ADT Board anticipate that the provision of 3 new high quality affordable rental homes will address some of the economic challenges encountered in recent years by providing homes for workers to help alleviate skill shortages in health & social care, education and the hospitality sectors by encouraging young families to return to, or settle on the island.
Arran’s MSP Kenneth Gibson welcomed the announcement and said:
“This is really great news for Arran.
“The SNP Government has awarded £84,000 in grant towards each of the 43 homes to be built.
“These homes do not only provide much needed affordable housing, they will create and sustain construction jobs on Arran
“I am absolutely delighted, as such homes are desperately needed and so to help the process I was pleased to have arranged and participated in meetings with ADT, North Ayrshire Council Chief Executive Craig Hatton and Minister for Housing, Local Government & Planning Kevin Stewart MSP over the last six months to pursue this.
“Kevin shared our enthusiasm and was always keen on making this award. He ensured that his officials worked closely with ADT throughout.
“ADT has done a power of work. It is their dogged determination to deliver that has brought this to fruition and special thanks are due to Sheena Borthwick, Tom Tracey and Bill Calderwood who worked so hard to make it happen, backed by the many islanders who contacted me to express their solid support for these essential new homes.”
Barry Mochan, Chair, Arran Development Trust added:
“This is a wonderful achievement for a community group to secure a grant offer of this magnitude and it will have such a positive immediate impact on the local community. The local community has wanted and needed this boost for so long and all the hard work getting it to this stage has finally paid off. We anticipate being in a position to start the build around spring 2020 and are actively working on this now”.
Tom Tracey, Chair, Arran Economic Group commented:
“This is a terrific achievement and in economic terms, it’ll be a step change in the right direction and a major milestone on a four year journey by ADT to bring affordable housing to Arran.
“Arran will now be able to attract the necessary workforce and provide affordable housing to ensure folks can remain on this beautiful island enjoying one of the highest quality of life ratings in the UK. The lack and provision of affordable housing will no longer be a constraint on the local economy.”
Bill Calderwood, Chair, Arran Community Council stated:
“These projects were identified by the community, led by the community and will finally bear fruit for the community. There have been Arran residents registered on the Common Housing Register for 10 years or more, without hope of securing an affordable rental home, so it is great for them to know that the wait will soon be over.”
Arran Development Trust is a registered Rural Housing Body (registration number 172), a company limited by guarantee (SC553739) and registered with OSCR (SC048480).
For further information on the work of the Arran Development Trust, Reports and Data go to www.discoverarran.com.