A wel­come boost

The Arran Banner - - Letters -

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.

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