Orkney Housing Association named Housing Association of the Year



Orkney Housing Association (OHAL) has collected the award for Housing Association of the Year at the Scottish Homes Awards.

Aimee Leask, Anne Fletcher and John Stockan collect the award. Photo Credit – Gerardo Jaconelli for the Scottish Home Awards

Almost 700 people from Scotland’s housing and homebuilding sector gathered in Glasgow last week for the prestigious event.

One of the most remote associations in Scotland, OHAL was established in 1985 and remains the only Registered Social Landlord in the Orkney Islands. It has built over 1050 houses since its inception.

The judging panel commended OHAL’s responsive approach to social housing, investment in its people and delivery of great customer service and contribution to the local community and society on the islands.

The Association’s chief executive Craig Spence said it was tremendous news and testament to the hard work of every member of staff at OHAL.

He added: “To be recognised by leaders in the housing sector as the top housing association in the country is quite something. I am very proud of the whole team and all their fantastic work.”

The judging panel considered the overall performance and impact that a housing association has made in the last year in deciding the winner.

The Association was represented at the awards by committee member John Stockan, Modern Apprentice Aimee Leask and director of finance & asset management, Anne Fletcher.

Elsewhere on the night, the competition’s newest category, Housing Regeneration Project of the Year, was won by Sanctuary Scotland for its work to regenerate the Anderston area in Glasgow. The £60-million project was commended for offering a mix of high quality affordable housing in the city centre of Glasgow as well as strengthening the community, with much improved amenity spaces.

Robertson Homes collected the top award, Housebuilder of the Year (more than 100 units), as well as an award for its show home, The Muir Apartment at Great Glen Hall in Inverness. The firm was commended for launching its new ‘Artistry’ range of house styles, providing contemporary and varied streetscapes all across Scotland, as well as increasing homes built by an impressive 50% and showing a pattern of continued growth. The company was also a finalist in a further five categories.

Also triumphing were Edinburgh-based Teague Group, winning the Housebuilder of the Year (less than 100 units) category. The judges specifically commended the company’s plans to regenerate the 17-acre Ropeworks site. On completion, this milestone development will provide over 813 homes, 5 commercial units, a new pocket park and new allotments for Edinburgh City Council.

Amongst the winners was The Crescent at Donaldson’s development by CALA Homes (East) which won awards in three separate categories. As well as winning the Show Home of the Year (with selling price over £400,000) the development won an accolade for Innovation in Design and a highly commended award for Apartment Development of the Year.

The judging panel also made a special presentation to McTaggart Group with the Judges Award of Merit in recognition of the work delivered through its 22-week ‘Construction Pathway’ programme, which is delivered in partnership with their clients and local schools.



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