We are pleased to announce that we have been awarded a grant from the Scottish Land Fund to purchase Bayview from OIC (the Harbour Master’s House at Gill Pier)! We will now be working toward achieving funding from Rural Housing to assist with refurbishment costs.
Following several meetings and discussions with potential funders, OIC, and others, Westray Development Trust proposed the refurbishment of Bayview to help address the acute shortage of a housing in Westray. The project will provide four apartments (1 or 2 bedrooms) in the main building and a three-bedroom house in the grounds.
Onsite parking will be provided for the new residents.
We are also approaching the Rural Housing Fund for grant assistance with the costs of developing the site.
We will be working with a third party, Registered Social Landlord to manage the flats on our behalf, subject to a new housing policy we will develop.
The Project Need
In order to have a final confirmation that the community still desired housing development in Westray, we sent out a Housing Needs Survey in February 2018. There were 27 responses, a good workable number. They all showed that there is a continued need for housing to be developed. The survey was not intended to replace the previous work undertaken over the last 3 years but to give the Board confidence that the need was still present.
On the strength of this last survey in conjunction with the work already completed by the Highlands Small Communities Housing Trust, the feedback from the potential funders and levels of staffing hours required to complete the applications. It was decided not to develop new-build housing at this busy time with the renovation of an existing property (Bayview) into several 1 – 2 bedroom flats being a more achievable goal