THE community-owned Isle of Gigha Heritage Trust (IGHT) has secured £1.8 million in funding to deliver 5 new affordable homes which meet the needs identified within the island community.
Following a community land buy-out in 2002, the island of Gigha’s population has increased from 100 residents to 170 residents today. However, following a consultation carried out in 2019, a survey revealed that Gigha needs more affordable homes to rent.
The five new affordable homes have been specifically designed to support intergenerational living; the intention is to help young people stay on the island to protect its future, whilst also providing accessible homes for older residents to continue living on the island.
The project which has been in the planning and design phase over the last 3 years has been subject to challenges due to the island’s accessibility and location, as well as an inflated construction market. The overall cost to deliver the project include the design and construction of the houses, as well as the high costs of delivering island infrastructure needed to support the new homes.
Despite the challenges, the IGHT continued to progress the project and recently secured over £1.8m in funding from the Scottish Government’s Rural and Island’s Housing Fund, Argyll and Bute Council, and Social Investment Scotland to deliver the scheme. Following the funding success, the build is due to start in early 2023 with ambitions for tenants to occupy the homes by mid-2024.
Ian Wilson, Chairman for the Isle of Gigha Heritage Trust, said: “We are delighted to see this project coming to fruition. Accessible housing for elderly, and suitable homes for young people is something that has been needed on the island for a long time. We are hugely grateful to the support received from our funders to help make this project happen, and we are looking forward to seeing the new homes being built and occupied.”