449 affordable houses by 2018

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A five-year housing plan which could see more than £160m invested in affordable housing in the region has been approved by Scottish Borders Council.

Members of the council’s executive committee gave their backing to a strategic housing investment plan which will see almost 1,200 affordable homes built across the region before 2022.

Hawick councillor Ron Smith told members: “This is an ambitious plan.

“Obviously, this will help stimulate the local economy through creating jobs and training opportunities, with an unparalleled, potential, £163m worth of investment over the plan period.”

However, some councillors questionedhe jump in estimated numbers and whether the construction sector in the Borders is geared up for this level of building.

In the first two years, 449 affordable homes are estimated for delivery across the Scottish Borders, including at Duns and Eyemouth.

Mid Berwickshire councillor Donald Moffat said he would have liked to have seen Greenlaw included in the plans, adding: “The target numbers are ambitious and the extra jobs and the more modern homes is a big plus for this area.

“It is a little frustrating where people cannot get homes where they want and people can sometimes get stuck in homes that are not adequate for this day and age.

“There will be people who are not on our radar here.”