New Osprey tenants move in as affordable housing in Peterhead gets major boost
Arlene McKenzie with son Adam partner Craig McLean (far left) and Osprey Housing Officer Jamie Brown (right).
Tenants at Osprey Housing Group’s brand new housing development in Peterhead have been settling in after getting the keys to their homes at the beginning of this month.
The Upper Grange project comprising 14 three-bedroom terrace houses and nine two-bedroom flats significantly boosts the supply and choice of much-needed affordable accommodation in the town for a mix of couples, families, and people on their own.
New tenant Arlene McKenzie and her sons Adam, 14, and Cole, six, had been living in temporary accommodation for some time before moving into their new house in Lingbank Close.
‘My eldest boy Adam has Type 1 diabetes and needs round-the-clock care,’ she said. ‘While we were in temporary accommodation, he and his brother were sharing a room which was not ideal.
‘Now the boys have a room each, and they are really delighted to have their own space and privacy. It also helps a lot when I’m checking on Adam’s diabetes during the night.’
Arlene added: ‘We’re so happy to be here now — we’re in our home town, the house is relaxing, modern, and bright, the neighbours are great, and we’re so close to the shops and the boys’ schools.’
Originally due for completion in September last year, the Lingbank Close development had to go on hold after main design-and-build contractor Deveron Construction Ltd went into administration in June 2018.
Bancon Construction took over the project following a re-tendering process and began work at the end of October.
Also affected by Deveron’s collapse was Osprey Housing Moray’s development of six three-bedroom family houses in Ripley Place, Keith, which was also completed by Banchory-based Bancon. The first families moved in there at the end of January.
Osprey Housing Group Chief Executive Glenn Adcook said: ‘Whilst it was sad to see the loss of a local contractor, we were left in a very difficult position by Deveron’s collapse.
‘This was the first time anything like this had happened since Osprey was established 20 years ago, and we were suddenly faced with two unfinished projects, both of them needed to meet urgent local housing needs.
‘Because of our commitment to quality, we knew we had to find a contractor we could trust to maintain our high standards and we are therefore very grateful to Bancon for stepping in and getting these important projects back on track and completed to such a high standard.’
Mr Adcook added: ‘Particular thanks go to Lloyds Banking Group/Bank of Scotland for our private finance contribution, as well as the Scottish Government for the provision of grant funding for both projects and all that they have done to support us through a very challenging time.
‘We would further like to thank Aberdeenshire Council for providing some initial support for Peterhead when the project was first approved.’
All the Peterhead and Keith properties which are now fully occupied have been built to a high specification meeting the latest energy-efficiency standards.
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