A SOUTH Ayrshire firm has been awarded a place on a new £1.5bn framework to help local authorities and housing associations in Scotland commission new homes to meet demand for social housing.

Ashleigh (Scotland) Ltd. is among 19 construction companies that have been appointed to the framework, which helps to reduce the time it takes social landlords to engage a contractor to build new homes, including flats, houses and bungalows, as well as care homes and student accommodation.

The framework was developed by Scotland Excel, Scotland’s centre of procurement expertise for local government.

Councillor Peter Henderson, who is a member of Scotland Excel’s Joint Committee, said: “Scotland’s 32 local authority areas have set out plans, which will see more than 40,000 new homes started across the country by 2024.

“Scotland Excel’s new build framework supports these plans, and, in particular, the delivery of much-needed social housing. I am pleased to see a South Ayrshire company among the suppliers, which offers the potential to create jobs and sub-contracting opportunities.”

The firm had to meet rigorous standards to be appointed and they have agreed to provide a range of community benefits including creating employment and training opportunities; paying the real Living Wage and engaging with supported businesses and social enterprises where the value of works exceeds £1m.