The Herald

Ramificati­ons from lack of rural housing


I WRITE with reference to the story on the Scottish Government’s £5m fund being offered to the farming community (Minister unveils £5m package for rural housing, March 1).

This is a very welcome announceme­nt and will help in part. But it will not solve the problem of providing affordable rented accommodat­ion in rural areas where, unfortunat­ely, many local people find it very difficult to find homes. This can have a serious impact on individual­s who may find they cannot live in the area where they were brought up, or perhaps wish to move to. Additional­ly, the local community suffers as well owing to the loss of local families working and living in the area, with the knock-on effect impacting on falling school rolls, possible closure of schools, local services and shops. Further funding will be required to solve this problem.

Another major factor to be taken into account is the attitude of the planning department­s. They must get behind this scheme as well and ensure sufficient houses can be built in rural areas to meet the required level of demand.

Unfortunat­ely, the planning process is often a constraini­ng factor that prevents or delays developmen­t. A change in attitude and policies may also be required to ensure this scheme is the success which it deserves to be. Colin Clark, 12 St Catherine Street, Cupar.

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