Guardbridge Development

A new £8 million development of 66 homes in Guardbridge by Kingdom Housing was the high point of the association’s annual road trip around Fife to inspect progress on developments and meet tenants.

Each year the Genrothes-based association organises a tour of its projects. The primary purpose is to provide an opportunity for Board Members to visit projects that have been developed by the association.

This year the Kingdom board members, management and staff were joined by members of Kingdom’s new Scrutiny Panel.

Kingdom works collaboratively with various partners and members of Eildon Housing Association‘s board and management team also joined the tour as part of the ongoing practice exchange relationship between the two associations.

Charles Milne, Chairperson with Kingdom said: “I find this annual event extremely informative and enjoyable. Most of the year Board members spend their time considering Board papers and attending meetings, so it is refreshing to see the results from the various strategies and most importantly, meet the tenants and see the impact the provision of the new homes has made.”

The tour included a visit to one of Kingdom’s most recent project completions in Guardbridge, near St Andrews. The project has provided 56 new homes for social rent and 10 mid market rent homes. The development was completed in March 2016 at a total cost of just over £8m, with around 50% of the funding provided to Kingdom as subsidy by the Scottish Government and Fife Council.

Carolynn McQueen, a tenant at the new Guardbridge project and a member of Kingdom’s Scrutiny panel said: “I found the whole day a wonderful, eye opening experience! I wanted to show the other visitors just how far Kingdom have come by inviting all to look at my new flat. I am very proud to have been given such a beautiful flat and wanted to share my pride in my home.

Another Guardbridge tenant to take part in the day was Peter Gibson who also invited the group into his home. He said: “I enjoyed day, I just thought that it would be better to allow the the group to view an occupied house on one of the sites that we visited rather than only looking at vacant or under-construction properties. From the feedback that I got while in my house the visitors enjoyed seeing the property and had a chance to ask about the energy running costs.”

The project visits involved a full day tour across Fife, taking in visits to a mix of different projects, including future sites, developments on site, recently completed projects and established projects completed a number of years ago.

Bill Banks, Kingdom’s Chief Executive added: “We gain a lot from this annual event. It provides staff with the opportunity to explain the background to different projects and gives everyone the chance to see first hand how we are helping to meet the housing needs across our areas of operation. It is also a chance to highlight the full range of collaborative arrangements we have with different partners and stakeholders and the added value that is being delivered through investment in new affordable housing.”

The route, for this year’s tour, included visits to projects in Leven, Lower Largo, Largoward, Upper Largo, Guardbridge, along with a number of different projects in Dunfermline.