Government funding to build island homes for social rent

Funding of more than £770,000 has been awarded to the Mull and Iona Community Trust (MICT) to build family homes for social rent in Ulva Ferry on the Island of Mull.

Government funding to build island homes for social rent

Image courtesy of Mull and Iona Community Trust

The money comes from the Scottish Government’s Rural and Islands Housing Fund (RIHF), part of a £30 million investment to increase the supply of affordable housing in rural and island areas.

MICT applied to the RIHF for grant funding to contribute to the construction of four family homes for social rent and the associated infrastructure works in Ulva Ferry. These will be built at two sites owned by the community and funded through the Scottish Land Fund in this extremely remote rural location, with two homes in Oskamull and two homes in Acharonich

The project follows on from two affordable homes previously developed in Ulva Ferry in 2017 using significant funds raised by MICT and the community and a grant contribution of £27,384 from Scottish Government. Grant approval has now been agreed for £777,855.94 for the current development. The additional funding means that, on completion, a total of £805,240 from the RIHF will have supported the construction of six new affordable homes and the associated infrastructure works in Ulva Ferry.

The Wee House Company has been selected as the contractor for this project and each home will be constructed as an off-site modular home at their facility in East Ayrshire and then delivered to the sites. It is hoped the homes will be ready for their new occupants in early 2021.

In 2018-19, a total of 9,554 affordable homes were delivered by the Affordable Housing Supply Programme, with 1,419 in remote and rural areas, including 115 on the islands

Housing minister Kevin Stewart said the fund builds on work and priorities set out by the Islands Act to address population decline, tackle climate change, and improve transport, the delivery of public services and digital connectivity.

He added: “These new homes will support the future of this community and make a real and lasting difference to the lives of existing and new residents. The Mull and Iona Community Trust and the local community have put a substantial amount of work into getting the project to this stage, including securing other funding from a variety of sources.

“The homes will provide high quality, warm, safe and secure places to live and will promote a more sustainable community, helping secure the future of the local school and supporting the economic growth and sustainability of Ulva Ferry. 

“I am proud of our record of delivering more than 89,000 affordable homes since 2007 in urban and rural communities right across the country.”

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