Cllr McMahon and Cllr Reid with Mr McCluskey and Gary Craig, Blair Millar and Carmen Chalmers from Housing Services

Welcome mat is rolled out at new housing at Witch Road

Visitors from the Council were welcomed by Mr McCluskey to view his new home at Witch Road, Kilmarnock.

The Council’s housing development at Witch Road in Central North, Kilmarnock includes 43 new homes for older ambulant disabled residents built by the Council’s strategic developer partner CCG (Scotland) Ltd.

The development features a mix of one and two-bedroom sized bungalows, designed to promote social inclusion for the new residents and features a private garden area and bespoke seating outside each home.

Councillor Jim McMahon, Cabinet Spokesperson for Housing, Welfare and Poverty, Social Care, Mental Wellbeing and Addiction and Recovery met with Mr McCluskey along with the Leader of the Council, and local member, Councillor Douglas Reid and local member Councillor James Adams.

Councillor McMahon said: “In the Hill Street area of Kilmarnock, there is now high demand for affordable housing after this site was cleared by the Council to accommodate this new development of 43 homes. The development has helped to regenerate the local area while providing a range of homes that are accessible, attractive and energy efficient; meeting the varying needs of our communities.

“Meeting Mr McCluskey really hit home the importance of our housing building programme. He moved from a large property, that will be available for a family to enjoy, and he is now in the town centre, much nearer the shops and his beloved Kilmarnock FC. The way the development has been designed there are lots of opportunities to feel part of a neighbourhood, while having good space between each property to the rear, with dedicated parking. This is a really well thought out development, which puts the needs of our residents first.”

Councillor Douglas Reid said: “The development at Witch Road really complements the ongoing regeneration work already completed or under way in this quarter of Kilmarnock. From the award-winning assisted living development at Lilyhill Gardens, the new homes at Hillhead Crescent, the external envelope improvement works at the adjacent flats at Rosebank Place, the Cunningham Housing Association affordable homes at Hill Street, the new Ayrshire College to the innovative Halo development, this area is being totally transformed through investment and understanding the needs of our communities.”

Mr McCluskey said: “I was born just minutes away from my new home so I know the area really well and I am enjoying being back in the town centre. My house is all on the level and I have parking to the rear with easy access to my kitchen, which is great. It is also really warm and because of the double glazing you can’t hear the road noise at all, it’s quiet and feels peaceful and I enjoy sitting in my living room.”

The new homes have been developed in response to an identified housing need as figures project that the number of pensionable-aged people in East Ayrshire will increase by 18.5% between 2016 and 2041.

CCG Director, Calum Murray, said: “Witch Road is another great example of how CCG and East Ayrshire Council’s strategic housebuilding partnership is not only supporting localised affordable housing supply in Kilmarnock and across the region but also addressing housing need. With a growing ageing population, there is increased demand for homes that can accommodate the needs of elderly tenants and our collaborative approach, working alongside MAST Architects, which focuses on accessibility and specification, will ensure residents of Witch Road will be able enjoy their independence in a warm, comfortable home for a longer period of time.

“We are also proud to state that as a result of this development, CCG delivered two jobs and four work placements alongside an £8,000 investment which was distributed to various community-based initiatives.”

All the homes, which are being delivered through the Scottish Procurement Alliance, will meet Housing for Varying Needs and Secure by Design standards and Silver Standard accreditation. The new homes will also have fire suppression measures installed in the form of sprinkler systems.

The project was developed with £3.397m of grant funding from the Scottish Government and contributes to their target of delivering 110,000 affordable homes by 2032.