Published: 23/12/2017 19:00 - Updated: 18/12/2017 14:14

19 new Invergordon homes open to tenants

Written byGregor White


Councillor Maxine Smith presented a bouquet to new tenants Karen and Andrew Sutton.

Nineteen new council houses have been completed in Invergordon, offering accommodation to people with a varying range of needs.

The newly-named Dewdale Court has been constructed on the site of the former Victoria Garage on the town’s High Street.

Flats and houses have been built around a courtyard and improvements were also carried out to the nearby High Street-Seabank junction as part of the building works.

The project was funded by Highland Council as part of its agreed council house build programme, benefitting from Scottish Government grant assistance. 

The houses were designed by  Dingwall-based Trevor Black Architects built by O’Brien Homes, and will all be made available for affordable rent levels.

And it will be used as a pilot for collaboration between the council, NHS Highland and Birchwood Highland to provide housing for those most in need due to a variety of different care issues.

NHS Highland’s complex case planning manager Arlene Johnstone said: "NHS Highland have worked collaboratively with Highland Council and Birchwood Highland to ensure individuals are enabled to move from long-term placements in hospital or nursing homes into high-quality desirable housing accommodation with a modern support package that will allow them to receive the help they require in a way that meets their needs. 

"Individuals will have choice and control over the support they receive and we are confident this will further enhance their recovery and allow them to develop active, meaningful lives in a community setting."

Birchwood Highland is a charity working with people with mental ill-health, supporting them to recovery.

Emily Stokes, chief executive of Birchwood Highland, said: "We’re delighted to have collaborated with Highland Council and NHS Highland on this project.

"As an organisation, Birchwood Highland is committed to investing in the Easter Ross area, and this attractive development provides a wonderful opportunity for people to regain their confidence by living independently in the community; promoting Birchwood’s own ethos of independence, inclusion and recovery.

"The transitional nature of the accommodation – ensuring a sustainable flow of occupants – will also ensure that others will benefit from this development well into the future."

All the houses have been rented to tenants who are either existing council tenants who are transferring to a new home or are applicants from the Highland Housing Register. 

Local Highland councillors Maxine Smith and Pauline Munro visited the development recently to welcome tenants Karen and Andrew Sutton to their new home.

Councillor Maxine Smith said: "It is always great to welcome new tenants into new council houses after so many years of being unable to build new homes.

"Our house build programme is now gathering pace and we can now offer some people quality, energy efficient homes.

"We hope Karen and Andrew and all the people moving into Dewdale Court enjoy many happy years in their new homes."

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