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NEW HOMES HELP MEET ASPIRATIONS OF LOCAL PEOPLE

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Scottish secretary Michael Forsyth today performed a ground breaking ceremony in Stornoway to start a£2.9m new hou...
Scottish secretary Michael Forsyth today performed a ground breaking ceremony in Stornoway to start a £2.9m new housing development to provide 53 new homes for the island.

The development, to be constructed on the site of the old Lewis hospital, will provide 18 low cost homes for purchase by April 1998 and 35 homes for rent by 1999.

Mr Forsyth said

'The government have one overall aim for housing. That is to ensure that a decent home is within reach of every family. We know that at least three quarters of people would like to own their own home. That is why we have promoted policies which have enabled home ownership to increase dramatically since 1979.

'The government recognises that rural areas have their own uniquely local housing problems which require a variety of innovative solutions. One of the problems is that there are simply not enough affordable houses for local people to be able to buy or rent. This development together with the later phases over the next few years will make a significant contribution towards meeting the housing needs and aspirations of local people and building a sustainable community, by providing a total of 53 new houses at a cost of nearly £3m.

'In the four years since 1992, Scottish Homes has invested almost £6m in the Western Isles. This has enabled over 230 units to be built and has levered in nearly £6 million in private finance. In 1996-97, Scottish Homes plans to spend over £1.2m which will provide 32 new units and generate a further £0.9m in private finance.

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