Housing minister opens new Forres affordable homes

96-year old Lily Hendry, who moved into her new council property last month, with housing minister Kevin Stewart MSP

One of Moray’s newest affordable housing developments has been formally opened by minister for local government, housing and planning, Kevin Stewart MSP.

Mr Stewart made the trip to Forres yesterday to meet with tenants living at the new 20-unit, £2.5 million development, which was completed in June.

Moray Council now has tenants occupying all homes on the site, which includes 12 one-bedroomed flats, four two-bedroomed bungalows, two two-bedroomed wheelchair accessible bungalows and two four-bedroomed houses.

Housing minister Kevin Stewart said: “I am delighted to officially open this 20 home development for Moray Council and congratulate them and their partners Springfield Properties in the delivery of these high quality, modern affordable homes which will be an asset to Forres. Supported by Scottish Government funding of over £1.1m, this development is providing affordable housing and ensuring people can live in their local community.

“We are committed to delivering at least 50,000 affordable homes over this Parliament, and ensuring they meet the needs of people and communities across Scotland – backed by £3 billion of investment. Working together with councils and housing associations, we are on target to reach that ambition.”

Tenant 96 year-old Lily Hendry, who moved in last month, has settled into her new home, having downsized from a 3-bedroom council house in Forres, where she lived for 33 years.

She had a hip operation in November 2017 and needed same-level living accommodation and says her new property is “brilliant” and “has been worth the wait”.

Chair of Moray Council’s communities committee, Cllr Louise Laing, said the completion of the development marks significant investment in housing infrastructure in the area.

Cllr Laing added: “Moray is a fantastic place to live and work but growing demand means that more than 300 houses per year need to be built to accommodate this. Last year Moray Council built 119 council houses and, over the next three years, Moray Council and the Scottish Government will be investing more than £25 million in providing more affordable housing to provide modern, attractive homes for our residents.”

Springfield Properties built the 20 homes for Moray Council in Forres.

Springfield Group partnerships managing director, Tom Leggeat, said: “Springfield has developed a strong working relationship with Moray Council, and together we have delivered over 230 homes within the last four years – including these 20 homes in Forres. The homes are stylish, energy efficient - which makes them cheaper to run - and in a good location.

“It was great to see the difference our homes made for the residents in Forres and to celebrate the completion of the development.”

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