Affordable homes to replace Edzell retirement flats
Angus Council has pressed on with its plan to demolish a former sheltered housing complex in Edzell and replace it with 21 new affordable homes.
Inglis Court is a retirement complex with 24 one-bedroom properties, as well as a three-bedroom house, which was formerly the warden’s home.
Over recent years, the unit has proved to be unpopular, outdated and has attracted very little demand.
A £3.5 million plan to knock down the flats and replace them with 21 new affordable homes was backed by councillors as far back as 2018, and received planning approval earlier this year. The development was supported by significant grant investment by the Scottish Government.
The proposed housing mix of 1, 2 and 3 bedroom properties would also have provided specialist accommodation in line with the council’s commitment to deliver wheelchair accessible and particular needs housing.
But as demolition loomed, a protest meeting led to more than 750 locals signing a petition calling for Inglis Court’s return to sheltered accommodation,
The local authority was then forced to put the project on pause so a full appraisal around a range of options could be drawn up.
At the full council meeting last week, councillors considered four options for the future of the complex, which would see the housing demolished, sold off, retained or given to a private company to run.
Communities convener Mark Salmond told the committee: “Many words have been spoken, positive and negative.
“I visited on Monday and I came away knowing in my heart this building is no longer fit for purpose and demolition and rebuild is the correct decision. We now have to move forward and decide what to do with Inglis Court. The new houses option brings many overall benefits.”
Councillor Bill Duff said he agreed with councillor Salmond, adding: “We often get accused of playing politics with these issues. On this occasion I think we have to agree to do what is best for Angus and what is best for the people on our council house waiting list.
“I agree option one is the only solution. I don’t want to see any more delays for building more council houses and am happy to support.”
Councillor Ronnie Proctor said the current state of the housing was “worse than some barracks” he’d stayed in while part of the armed forces.
Councillors all agreed to go forward with option one, which will see the retirement flats demolished and council housing built.
Mr Salmond added: “I am delighted council has made a pragmatic decision to create high-quality homes for which there is demand and will protect people from homelessness.
“I am glad we can start to address the housing need by directly addressing inequalities, increasing diversity and encouraging inclusion in North Angus. We can future-proof Edzell as a place for everyone, including those who can’t afford private housing.”