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Council reaffirms support for Scotland's Housing Expo

Issued: 26 May 2010

The Highland Council has reaffirmed its continued support for Scotland's Housing Expo which will take place throughout the month of August at Milton of Leys, in Inverness.

Members of the Planning, Environment and Development Committee today (Wednesday 26 May) agreed to underwrite the event up to a maximum of £100,000 to provide resources for the Board until ticket sales and all sponsorship funding is received.

30,000 visitors are expected to attend the Expo which is the first of its kind in the UK.

Chairman of the Committee, Councillor Ian Ross said: "The Council has been an active promoter and supporter of the Housing Expo since its inception. It is a very important event which will put the Highlands on the national and international stage when it comes to showcasing innovative modern low energy housing designs and stimulating the wider use of sustainable local timber and other Highland materials. An enormous amount of work has already been achieved and from now until the event opens in August the whole site will be a flurry of activity. As a council we fully support the project and the creativity and aspirations it will stimulate. I encourage as many people as possible to take this unique opportunity to come along and enjoy the experience."

After a national design competition, 25 winning entries were chosen to be developed on site. These and a further 27 new houses and gardens will be open to the public. Themed lectures and workshops will run and there will be special activities and events for the whole family to take part in. At the end of the Expo the 8 private developer houses will be for sale while 20 of the affordable homes will be handed over to Albyn and Cairn Housing Association. The remaining 24 homes are being built for the Highland Housing Alliance.

Councillor Jean Urquhart, Chair of the Board welcomed the council support. She said: "It was a bold and not without risk decision to create the event, which has never happened before in the UK. A great deal of interest is getting generated and I sincerely believe it will shape the way ahead for future housing development. The £100K provided to us now should be seen very much as a short-term loan as I am certain the Expo will prove to be a popular success."

© 2010 Highland Public Services Partnership.
Project part-financed by the European Union (European Regional Development Fund) within the INTERREG IIIB Northern Periphery Programme