Work begins on social housing

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Foundations have been laid for a new £1.2m social housing development in South Aberdeenshire.

North-east building company Bancon Construction started work on the new development at The Green in Portlethen for Scottish charity Cornerstone on Monday.

The planned flats, which will allow six people with disabilities from the local area to live more independently, is due for completion next summer.

Cornerstone recently launched its “Home Is Where The Heart Is” appeal to raise enough money, with additional funding from the Scottish Government, to build the flats. The land was then secured earlier this year with the support of Aberdeenshire Council.

Each flat will use the latest technology to allow the people who live there to be supported by Cornerstone staff and feel safe while maintaining a good level of independence. The properties will also be equipped to deal with residents’ changing needs.

Cornerstone is a charity that provides care and support services for adults, young people and children across Scotland who live with learning disabilities, physical disabilities, mental health problems and other support needs. Since 1980, it has grown to become a leading charity and now generates annual incomes in excess of £30 million.

Jayne Findlay, Cornerstone Regional Director North said: “Finding a place to live is often difficult for people with disabilities, especially if a person has complex needs. In the past, the only options for many young people and adults with disabilities have been institutions, group homes or living with family. It is very exciting that we are now in a position to start the build of the new development, and we are very much looking forward to working with Bancon Construction over the coming months.

“The flats will make a huge difference to the people we support - there are financial, attitudinal and physical barriers that combine to make having a home to call their own an unattainable dream for many people with disabilities. However, every day Cornerstone sees the difference that supporting people to live independently can make to people with disabilities and their communities.”

George Parsons, Managing Director of Bancon Construction, said: “We are delighted to be involved in this important community project. It is always satisfying to be part of something that enhances community life in the North-east. We are looking forward to working closely with Cornerstone over the coming months.”