A welcome boost

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It seems council housing is very much in the news this week.

No sooner do North Ayrshire Council reveal details of 26 new council houses for Arran, than Prime Minister Teresa May is jumping on the bandwagon with a £2 billion pledge for social housing across the country.

That may be a little flippant, but the news that the first new council houses on Arran for more than 30 years is very serious indeed and a welcome boost for the economy.

And it doesn’t end there, with another 20 affordable houses coming within the next four years. But given both their locations in an already busy part of Brodick, it is important that suitable infrastructure is put in place as well.

And while welcome, it is really only the first step.

The Arran Economic Group is of the opinion that the island needs a minimum of 200 affordable homes if it is to attract young working families to replace the present working-age population which is expected to decline by nearly 50 per cent by 2025.

The island already has jobs available across all sectors, but few candidates to fill them, so the commitment to build new council and other affordable housing is indeed a welcome one.

Let’s hope other initiatives bear similar fruit.