East Ayrshire Council honours former provost at new housing development
A new assisted living development at Andrew Nisbet Place, Hurlford, has been completed and is now welcoming new residents.
The name of the development was unveiled at an official opening ceremony performed by Kevin Stewart MSP, minister for local government, housing and planning.
Andrew Nisbet lived in Hurlford and served as provost of Kilmarnock and Loudoun District Council from 1980 to 1984 and Hurlford and Crookedholm Community Council put forward the suggestion to name the development after him.
Andrew Nisbet Place provides 13 assisted living homes, along with a care provider’s base, and is located adjacent to the existing Hurlford community centre. The homes are designed to support people with a range of disabilities to live independently and safely in their own homes with the support of an on-site care provider, The Richmond Fellowship Scotland.
The homes are bright, energy-efficient and have specially designed features installed including wet rooms and rise and fall kitchen worktops in the wheelchair accessible ground floor flats.
The build benefits from being Housing for Varying Needs and Secure by Design compliant, as well as meeting the Silver Standard. It has a lift, power-assisted doors and a visible, welcoming entry. All of the flats can be accessed from an internal street that has been designed to face onto the residents’ private, enclosed garden.
New tenant Margaret Williamson welcomed official visitors into her new home. Margaret’s sister, Morag Pieroni, said: “Margaret just loves everything about her new home. The best thing is she can move around easily on her own, everything in the kitchen moves up and down. She also loves being able to go in and out of the garden on her own and at night she loves to see the garden lights from her bedroom window. She says she now has her ‘mojo back’ and enjoys being part of the community and meeting people again.”
Kevin Stewart MSP said: “This government wants to ensure everyone has a safe, warm and affordable place to live, backed by the appropriate support, and I’m delighted that these homes will allow residents to lead independent lives.
“Housing is a priority for us which is why we are proud of our record of delivering over 87,000 affordable homes since 2007 and we’re investing a record £3.3 billion to ensure we’re on track to deliver our ambitious target of 50,000 affordable homes by 2021.”
Councillor Douglas Reid, leader of the council, was joined by Councillor Elena Whitham, cabinet member for housing and communities, and councillors Fiona Campbell, John Campbell, Tom Cook, Barry Douglas, Jon Herd and John McGhee.
Mr Reid said: “This stunning new development at Andrew Nisbet Place will enable residents to live independently and safely in the local community, with support from health and social care services, in an environment that promotes social interaction.
“The concept for this development has been informed by collaborative working between the council’s housing service and East Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership, and as such, it shares many similarities in terms of its layout and design with the hugely successful, award-winning development at Lilyhill Gardens in Kilmarnock. In this regard, I am delighted to advise that Andrew Nisbet Place has already been nominated for the Inside Housing Development Awards Best Partnership: Council or NHS development.”
Councillor Whitham, cabinet member with responsibility for housing and communities, added: “This development forms part of our ambitious Strategic Housing Investment Plan 2019-24, which contains plans for the delivery of 836 affordable homes in town centres across East Ayrshire by the Council and its Registered Social Landlord partners.
“With a political career spanning over 25 years, Andrew Nisbet was a popular Councillor who gave so much to this community. It is a truly fitting tribute that his legacy lives on with this assisted living development in Hurlford being dedicated to his name.”
The development was built by Glasgow-based contractor and manufacturer CCG (Scotland) Ltd as part of an ambitious partnership that will see over 400 affordable homes constructed across East Ayrshire over the next three years.
Calum Murray, CCG director, said: “A fairly unique offering as part of CCG and East Ayrshire Council’s housebuilding programme, Andrew Nisbet Place is a stunning development and we are thrilled residents will receive support in the form of the Richmond Fellowship who are a great care provider.
“I am also delighted to state that as a direct result of CCG’s involvement, a total of £3,000 was donated to community-based projects as well as the creation of one full-time job and two work placements.”
Andrew Nisbet’s sons, Jim and Andrew, attended the visit and said: “We would like to thank East Ayrshire Council for bestowing this great honour by naming this development in memory of our late father. He worked tirelessly for his community, and we are proud to celebrate the opening of Andrew Nisbet Place today.”
In addition to Hurlford, sites have been identified in the approved Strategic Housing Investment Plan throughout East Ayrshire with new affordable homes already on-site or identified to be delivered in Newmilns, Kilmarnock, Auchinleck, Stewarton, Patna, New Cumnock, Mauchline, Cumnock, Kilmaurs and Drongan.