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11.7.2020 : 19:48 : +0100
New house being constructed at Airor

Projects: Housing

Housing has always been a big priority for the Foundation. When we bought the estate we inherited 5 properties, all of them extremely run down. Over the last 11 years we have worked hard to improve housing on Knoydart through a combination of

-          Upgrading existing housing

-          Developing new housing

-          Working with partners eg Lochaber Housing Association

-          Selling land for homes through a shared equity option


Behind this has been a lot of paperwork as we have developed housing related policies and procedures, undertaken housing needs surveys and taken part in landlord training.

The first new property built back in 2001 was an A-frame chalet to provide a home for temporary workers. This has provided a home for up to 2 individuals at a time, and in 2012 we are due to refurbish it to provide single person accommodation.

In 2002 we undertook the refurbishment of Foremans Cottage and Stalkers Cottage to provide homes for 3 families, creating an extra house , Rangers Cottage, by going into the roof space at Foremans. The funds came from the Highland Council and from a mortgage that the Foundation took out with Triodos bank. Lochaber Housing Association helped to bank-roll the scheme, and provided technical advice.

In 2003 we refurbished a small property next to the Foundation office to create a small bedsit, but in 2011 we developed this back in to additional office/storage space.


Rural Homes for rent

In 2009 we got the opportunity to apply for a new pilot grant, Rural Homes for Rent,  a grant available to private landlords for new affordable housing. The Knoydart Foundation was the only community organisation to be successful in its application for funding, for three new homes: two in Inverie, and one in Airor. Development work was supported by HIE, and the funding package for the properties was provided through the Scottish Government, with the Foundation putting in the value of the land and taking out a mortgage with Triodos bank to provide the balance of funds. In addition we secured some additional funding from the Highland Housing Alliance Charitable Trust and Community Energy Scotland which allowed us to put solar panels on the properties, and undertake some other works. The Airor property is not connected to our local grid and is powered by generator so we are looking to the future as to how we can make this more sustainable. The properties have provided homes for three families and have helped to contribute to the sustainability of Knoydart in the process.


The future

Despite the works undertaken to date there is still more we want to do. Manitoba East and West still require refurbishment, and we intend to sell a plot on the open market to help fund this. There is also still a need for accommodation suitable for single people and couples, and we hope that this will be solved in the future by building a new bunkhouse and converting the old one into suitable sized units.

More Information


<-- Click to download PDF document about Knoydart's housing

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