Housing hope

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The news this week that Arran is well on the way to getting another 56 affordable homes is to be welcomed.

However the work which has been involved to get to this stage, first by the Arran Economic Group, and then its new operating arm the Arran Development Trust, should not be underestimated.

When the economic group was first formed three years ago one of its main concerns was that the chronic lack of affordable housing was seriously impeding future growth on the island. They said then and still say today that 200 affordable homes are urgently needed.

But at last progress is being made. Two months ago North Ayrshire Council announced that work would start on 34 new homes and 20 more are proposed by the Trust Housing Association, both in Brodick.

Now 56 more, some of which will be in Lamlash, have got initial government backing taking the total to 110 much needed new homes by 2021. However, that is not the end but just the beginning.

The formation of a new housing association operating from, and serving just Arran, means that the work on affordable housing across the island – because the needs in the more rural parts of the island are just as acute as they are in the main villages.