From derelict to desireable

An empty Midlothian property dubbed an eyesore by locals is transformed into quality affordable homes thanks to funding from the Scottish Government's Town Centre Empty Homes Fund.

The Darag development in Mayfield has had a chequered past and was last used several years ago by Midlothian Council's Homeless department as a house of multiple occupancy. The property lay empty for many years, targeted by vandals and falling into serious disrepair following a significant fire.

Thanks to a £241,000 grant and a loan of £245,000 as part of the Scottish Government's Town Centre Empty Homes Fund we have now completed a major redevelopment of the property to create 6 new affordable homes. The three bedroom ground floor flat has fully disabled access, rarely available in properties of this size in Midlothian.

There is high demand for homes in the Mayfield area which has one of the lowest levels of turnover for council housing in Midlothian.

Vehicle technician Nick Martin was the first to move into the completed development: "I've lived in Mayfield all my life and was aware that Darag had lain empty for a number of years. I was delighted to get a call from Chris at Castle Rock Edinvar to say the building was being redeveloped and there was a flat available for me if I wanted it.

"I was the first to move in and I'm really happy here, everything is brand new. I have 2 bedrooms which is great for when my kids come to stay, and they love it as well. We have a shared garden and really good neighbours."

Richard Jennings, Managing Director

"By working together with public and private sector partners we have transformed a derelict trouble spot into desirable accommodation that is helping to meet demand for quality affordable housing in the area. It wouldn't have been possible without support from the Empty Homes Fund. 

"We have had very positive feedback on the development from the local community and our housing management team is on hand to help new tenants to fully participate with the existing range of activities and services available locally."

Councillor Stephen Curran, Cabinet Member for Customer and Housing Services

"It is fantastic to see the completion of the Darag development in Mayfield. The site has had a mixed past but it really is great to see its transformation into quality affordable homes.

"Thanks to the support of the Empty Homes Fund, and partnership work across both public and private sectors, we have been able to provide some brilliant homes for local families."



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