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Housing partnership gets funding for insulation works

The Hebridean Housing Partnership (HHP) has received a sum of £340,000 to carry out insulation work on 68 homes in the Western Isles.

It has been given the money from the Scottish government's Home Energy Efficiency Programmes Capital Acceleration Programme, which is designed to help councils and housing associations improve the energy efficiency of properties around Scotland. Measures such as solid wall insulation, cavity wall insulation and loft insulation are among the measures the funding can help pay for.

The bid was organised jointly with the local authority of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, which will administer the project, which will focus on room-in-roof insulation.

Commenting on the award, HHP chairman Iain Macmillan said: "HHP has a significant number of homes that need this insulation and to receive this amount of funding is great news for tenants. I am particularly pleased that the Scottish government has recognised the need for this type of insulation in the Outer Hebrides. I would also like to thank the Comhairle for their assistance in putting the bid together."

Chair of environment & protective services for Comhairle nan Eilean Siar Norman MacLeod said the grant recognises the fact that the islands have some of the highest fuel poverty rates in the UK.

Scotland's housing minister Kevin Stewart said it remains the priority of the government at Holyrood to ensure those in greatest need get priority. He praised the council and its partners for their "excellent track record" in taking steps to alleviate fuel poverty.

A number of home insulation schemes have been taking place around Scotland, including one pilot where householders can get loans of up to £40,000 to carry out necessary work ahead of the fitting of insulation and other energy efficiency measures, an example of which would be fixing a wall before it is insulated.

The £10 million Warmer Homes Scheme pilot has been running in Glasgow, Perthshire and Argyll & Bute.