Housing minister visits new Midlothian tenant

Saturday July 8th 2023

housing-minister-visits-Midlothian

Paul McLennan MSP Minister for Housing (left), Ashleigh Alderton and Economic Development Councillor Colin Cassidy.


Written by Midlothian View Reporter, Luke Jackson

Paul McLennan MSP Minister for Housing visited Midlothian this week to hear more about Midlothian Council’s housing programme. More than 1200 council houses have been built with a further 600 homes under construction or soon to be on site.

The programme includes the largest Passivhaus project in Scotland, with 189 homes to be built to the exacting Passivhaus standard, in line with Midlothian Council’s Net Zero Housing Design Guide. This ensures exceptionally high levels of energy efficiency and low utility bills for our residents.

Cabinet Member for Economic Development Councillor Colin Cassidy described the meeting as “extremely positive”. During the meeting, the Cabinet Member and the Minister stopped off for a chat with Ashleigh Alderton outside her family’s new council home on Arrol Avenue, Newtongrange.

Ashleigh, her husband Mark and their two girls, Ellie, 13 and Olivia, 10, moved into the two bedroom house in May. A former labourer with Cruden, Mark, who now works with Bellway Homes, helped build the estate which has 79 homes including 22 one bedroom amenity flats for people over 55 and a three bedroom home accessible for wheelchairs.

Ashleigh said: “Mark knew the houses inside out so when we heard we’d be moving into one of them it was a big shock – a good one. We couldn’t be happier. We’d been renting another council house for about eight years but this is definitely a forever home. There’s more space and a good sized garden. The kids have really settled in and made loads of friends, it’s so peaceful and the neighbours are great. Sometimes you wake up in the morning and feels it’s a dream.”

Cllr Cassidy said the Minister was just as impressed with the homes as tenant Ashleigh. He says: “It was an extremely positive meeting. The Minister was really impressed with what we’re doing here housing wise and was keen to hear more about the challenges we’re facing in terms of building costs and the demands of a growing population. We left with the promise of more discussions to come.”

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