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News | 19th March 2021

Agency awards £92k to station conversion

Work on building four flats is expected to be completed in May


THE £600,000 conversion of the former Langholm police station has been boosted by a substantial grant from a regional agency

South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE) has awarded the Eskdale Foundation £92,000 to help towards the cost of developing the building in Thomas Telford Road into four affordable flats.

Once complete, the refurbishment of the listed building, empty since 2010, will provide high-quality, affordable apartments for local people in the heart of Langholm.

Most of the work has been done and is expected to be finished in May. Everything is done in flats two, three and four, apart from some decorating, while in flat one there is some plastering and most of the decorating to do.

All the roof work and gutter repairs are finished.

The project is already supported by the Scottish government’s Rural and Islands Housing Fund, DGC Town Centre Living Fund, the Architectural Heritage Fund and Muirhall Energy, along with  a significant contribution by the organisation itself.

The grant from SOSE represents the final piece of the funding package and allows the project to move forward. The total cost is £596,132.

The Eskdale Foundation is a community development trust with charitable status and was formed in 1996.

It works with communities in Eskdale to ensure there are accessible facilities and amenities available to all.

It also owns the High Street charity shop and four houses and profits from these are invested back into the community.

Ronnie Tait, a director, said: “SOSE’s support has allowed the foundation to progress much more quickly with this project.

“Without its help, it would have been much more difficult for us to move forward with our plans.

“We are extremely grateful to SOSE for relieving the pressure and for all the help and advice we have received from our community adviser who has supported us on this journey.”

Ronnie said he would also like to thank Mike Staples of South of Scotland Community Housing who had worked so hard for them over the past few years.

They also had a lot of help from the Development Trust Association Scotland.

Professor Russel Griggs, added: “The Eskdale Foundation put the needs of its community at the heart of what it does and we’re delighted to be able to support this project.

“Communities are the lifeblood of our towns, villages and economy.

“As the economic and community development agency for the region, we are here to listen first-hand to what businesses, communities and individuals need and respond.

“Providing affordable housing and town centre regeneration will be an important building block in the COVID-19 recovery as Langholm seeks to attract employers and rebrand as a tourist town.

“We’re committed to continuing to work with communities such as Langholm and the Eskdale Foundation to support them in their aspirations as we recover, ensuring we remain a region of opportunity.”

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