Wanted: potential affordable housing sites

LOCAL residents, townships and landowners in Staffin are being encouraged to suggest potential sites for new affordable housing.

The Staffin Community Trust has issued the call. Fifteen years have passed since affordable homes were built in Staffin after the houses emerged following the demolition of the old school.

The Trust sees the provision of housing as vital if younger people are to be retained within the district, the school roll decline reversed and jobs created through the proposed Slipway development.

A comprehensive report on the issue, which was commissioned by the Trust, had indicated there is a demand in Staffin for affordable homes, where 18 per cent of housing stock is now holiday homes.

Both of Staffin’s national elected representatives, Dave Thompson MSP and MP Charles Kennedy, have backed the Trust’s efforts in pressing for affordable accommodation.

The Trust had a positive and productive meeting with representatives from Highland Council, including Cllr John Gordon, Lochalsh and Skye Housing Association and the Highlands Small Housing Communities Trust on Tuesday night (30.9).

The process involved in finding and investigating sites and the range of funding approaches available were outlined by the officials, who warned it would not be a speedy process.

The Trust is now seeking to pinpoint possible locations in Staffin which could be suitable for housing.

If any local resident, township or landowner has any suggestions they are encouraged to contact the Trust’s development officer Hugh Ross by November 30.

Hugh can be contacted on 014740 562 464, by e-mail staffin.ldo@gmail.com or alternatively call in at the portakabin, beside the Church of Scotland, between Monday and Friday.