Leith homes given million pound makeover

Richard Jennings

Residents of a Leith street who once feared they might lose their homes have benefitted from a £1 million housing improvement programme thanks to Castle Rock Edinvar Housing Association.

Places for People Scotland acquired 92 properties in Lorne Street from the Agnes Hunter Trust just over twelve months ago. The grant-making Charitable Trust’s decision to sell the properties to safeguard its ability to maintain financial grants to organisations which support health and social welfare in Scotland, had left tenants facing an uncertain future.

Since taking over the portfolio Castle Rock Edinvar has significantly improved 21 empty units by installing gas central heating, undertaking electrical upgrades and replacing kitchens and bathrooms where necessary. It has now successfully re-let all previously empty properties in the portfolio.

The Association is investing a further £960,000 before the end of March 2018 on a planned maintenance programme that will see timber double glazing installed in all properties, heating upgraded where required to meet its standards, a programme of roof maintenance as well as kitchen and bathroom improvements.

Managing director Richard Jennings said: “The purchase of the properties in Lorne Street ended a period of insecurity for the residents and our investment programme is a mark of our commitment to the future of the properties and the health and wellbeing of our tenants. We remain grateful to the Scottish Government and City of Edinburgh for their help in making the acquisition possible and I am confident that both the physical and service improvements we promised, and are delivering on, will make an already tight knit community a great place to live.”

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