Ground breaking at site of new housing at Witch Road

The new homes have been developed in response to an identified housing need as figures project that the number of pensionable-aged people in East Ayrshire will increase by 18.5% between 2016 and 2041.

The development, which will feature a mix of one and two-bed sized bungalows being created on the cleared site at Witch Road/Witchhill Place, is being designed to promote social inclusion for the new residents and will feature a private garden area and bespoke seating outside the residents’ homes.

Councillor Jacqui Todd, Cabinet Spokesperson for Housing, Welfare and Poverty, performed the official ground breaking and was joined on the site by Leader of the Council, Councillor Douglas Reid and local elected member Councillor Tom Cook. Cllr Todd said: “In recognition of the anticipated change to our communities’ population, their needs and requirements in social housing have to be taken into full consideration. We want to provide accommodation that not only meets the needs of all individuals, but also offers quality social housing that people will aspire to reside in, find enjoyment from living in, and which provides support to maintain independence and inclusion in our communities.

“This development provides an opportunity for town centre accommodation which encompasses the values of accessible, attractive and energy efficient properties and it will greatly enhance the surrounding area.”   

Councillor Douglas Reid, Leader and Cabinet Spokesperson for Covid Recovery, Strategic Planning, Community Wealth Building and Regeneration said: “The development at Witch Road really complements the ongoing regeneration work already completed or under way in this quarter of Kilmarnock. From the award-winning assisted living development at Lilyhill Gardens, the external envelope improvement works at the adjacent flats at Rosebank Place, the Registered Social Landlord affordable homes at Hill Street, the new Ayrshire College to the innovative Halo development, this area is being transformed through investment and understanding the needs of our communities.”

CCG Managing Director, David Wylie, said: “Witch Road is the seventh project to have been undertaken through the hugely successful East Ayrshire Council and CCG housebuilding partnership. Together, we have helped transform communities across the region by providing up to 200 modern, energy-efficient homes as well as a legacy of jobs and localised investment.

“With homes that are specially-designed for older, ambulant disabled residents, Witch Road is a great example of how the needs of the end-user is taken into account; supporting an improved standard of living as well as their long-term independence. I am of no doubt that the development will be a valuable contributor to the Kilmarnock community and I look forward to seeing how works progress as we move towards a late-2022 completion.”  

All the homes, which are being delivered through the Scottish Procurement Alliance, will meet Housing for Varying Needs and Secure by Design standards and Silver Standard accreditation. The new homes will also have fire suppression measures installed in the form of sprinkler systems.

The project is being developed with funding from the Scottish Government and is part of their target to deliver 110,000 affordable homes by 2032.