A development of eight new homes has officially opened in Blair Atholl.
The Watermill Development – part of Atholl Estates – was opened by John Swinney MSP on Monday afternoon after six years of planning.
The new housing has been designed to be more environmentally friendly in the long term.
Benefit residents’ lives
Mr Swinney was “delighted” to open the new development and believes it will be beneficial to the lives of its residents.
He said: “I was delighted to open the Watermill development in Blair Atholl, which will provide new, affordable homes in one of the most beautiful areas of Perthshire.
“This has been a long, collaborative process between the Scottish Government and Atholl Estates, and is further evidence of the SNP’s commitment to ensuring that everyone in Scotland has access to quality, affordable housing.
“This development will significantly benefit the lives of new tenants, and all involved in bringing this project to fruition should be justifiably proud of their efforts.”
‘Highly energy efficient’
Planners say the two-bedroom cottages were designed to be “highly energy efficient” and “low maintenance”.
Heating is supplied through “smart” electrical radiators that sense when there is spare energy on the grid. This can be used at a low tariff.
Primarily aimed at senior citizens, five of the homes have already been let to estate tenants living in Blair Atholl and the surrounding areas.
Andrew Bruce Wooton, who oversaw the project, says the community was the development’s main focus.
He said: “This has been a collaboration with a community goal at its heart and I am delighted to now see the first tenants moving into their new homes.”
The Watermill Development comes as part of the Scottish Government’s “commitment” to affordable housing.
Housing Secretary Shona Robison said: “I welcome the Watermill Development and recognise that good quality, affordable housing is essential to help attract and retain people in Scotland’s remote and rural communities.
“Scotland has led the way in the delivery of affordable housing across the UK with almost 100,000 affordable homes delivered since 2007.
“We are committed to continuing to support the delivery of more affordable homes going forward through our Affordable Housing Supply Programme.”
The development comes following a collaboration between Atholl Estates and the Scottish Government through the Rural Affordable Housing Fund.
Designed by the James Denholm Partnership, the houses were built by Osprey Construction.