The Association has been working to provide quality, affordable housing in the county the past 32 years and marked a major development milestone, welcoming the Minister for Housing and Local Government to the official opening of their 1000th home on 31st March 2017.
John Rodwell, Chair of the Association said “It’s a fantastic achievement marking our commitment to deliver high quality, efficient housing. We are very proud to have supplied affordable homes for so many people in Orkney and we will continue to do so – building really high quality properties and delivering the best customer service we can. We set very high standards for what we expect our new-build properties to achieve and, like all our local contractors, Orkney Builders have delivered some excellent new homes in this scheme. I am sure that our residents will be very happy here.”
Kirkwall’s new development at Liberator Drive consists of 11 rented and 4 low cost home ownership properties in the first phase of the development. In a special ceremony to handover the new development Craig Spence, Chief Executive was joined by Scottish Minister for Local Government and Housing, Kevin Stewart SNP and retiring staff member Moira Irvine, marking the significant milestone by unveiling a plaque set in a locally quarried standing stone.
Minister for Local Government and Housing, Kevin Stewart, said: “It’s a great honour to be asked to share the official opening of Orkney Housing Association Limited’s 1000th house with Moira.
“I believe good quality and affordable housing is something that everyone deserves access to and I was pleased to meet Erin to see how she and her family are settling in to their new home. We recognise the challenges of developing affordable housing in rural areas, and the importance of strong partnership working in delivering right housing in the right places to reflect the needs of the people of Orkney.”
Moira Irvine joined OHAL in 1990 when they had built 28 houses and said “The Association has made such a difference to so many people over the years. I know my colleagues will go on to help many more people, and I am really proud to be asked to help open the 1000th house on my last day in the office.”
A welcome bouquet of flowers were handed over to the resident Erin Foulis of the 1000th new home
“We really love our new home, and it is quite exciting to be the first people living in OHAL’s 1000th build.” said Erin.
Craig Spence, Chief Executive said “This milestone is a real tribute to everyone who has contributed to the Association over the years. Our founding Committee members were ambitious for the Association, and this 1000th property marks a real endorsement of their bold vision.” He added, “we couldn’t have achieved this without the contribution of so many dedicated staff who have made a difference in varied roles over the years. This is for them all to be proud of, and a very fitting way for us to wish Moira - our longest serving current employee - a very enjoyable retirement.”