Minister opens affordable social housing complex in Cumbernauld

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A LANDMARK stage was reached in Cumbernauld’s housing portfolio last week – after the apartments built to replace landmark high rises were officially opened.

The Scottish Goverment’s housing minister Keith Brown did the honours at the new Fleming Road development which boasts 31 apartments. Every flat is occupied by local familes who recently left the 1960s-built blocks in nearby Allanfauld Road.

Coincidentally the block marks the 2000th construction made by Sanctuary in Scotland – and the housing agency’s director Gordon Laurie also attended.

He said “We are delighted that the housing minister has taken time from his busy schedule to help mark a significant milestone.’’

The firm – which is Scotland’s biggest housing association developer – intends to replace the 566 blocks with 440 modern energy efficient flats in ongoing phases. Among the new residents are George and Isabell Vincent who had lived in Buchan House for 33 years but made the move in February.

Isabell (80) said: “We love our flat. It’s lovely and bright in the morning and in the evening the sunlight just streams in. The high rise blocks were good in 1979 but when we left the dampness was unreal. Our new flat is warm, there’s no noise and it’s ideal for both of us at our age,’’

Isabell is not the only fan as the minister toured the block and declared himself delighted at what he saw.

Mr Brown said: “These homes are warm and comfortable and I think they are very well suited to the people who are living in them. Investment in new, affordable social housing like this is extremely welcome.’’

Meanwhile Central Scotland List MSP Mark Griffin also attended the launch

He said: “I was happy to welcome the Housing Minister to the area. It is great to see new homes being built in Seafar, which will help ease the major housing shortage affecting our community and Scotland as a whole.

“I was delighted to see that residents are so happy in their new homes. Sanctuary has done a good job with the site,” he added.