Revealed: Lack of South Ayrshire council spending in rural areas

New figures show how South Ayrshire Council has pulled the plug on investing in Maybole and Girvan.

At a full council meeting on Thursday, Maybole Councillor Brian Connolly asked for figures on recent capital spending in South Ayrshire towns.

Remarkably, housing revenue figures show that not a single penny has been spent on council housing in Maybole in the last five years, with only £79,131 spent in Girvan compared to over £16m in Ayr and close to £450,000 in Troon between 2010-15.

No funding is earmarked for council housing in Maybole over the next five years, with only £100,000 this year for Girvan compared with £12m in Ayr and over £1.5m in Troon.

Councillor Connolly said: “This is a real kick in the teeth to those in the community of Maybole who fight hard for the town.

“It’s just so disappointing to see us left with nothing in the town when it badly needs investment.

“As Councillor Bill Grant has said, if the council aren’t prepared to invest in the economy, why should we expect anyone else to?”

Councillor Alec Clark added: “I think the figures speak for themselves of the investment in urbanised zones of South Ayrshire.

“It is time officers recognised the need for suitable housing in rural areas such as Girvan and South Carrick, where there is a real need for one-bed units.

“If you are going to regenerate the area and bring people here you need to have the right housing stock.”

Capital spending figures show that between 2010-15 almost £6m was spent in Girvan, compared with £3.6m in Maybole. However, in that period over £27m was spent in Ayr and £10m in Troon.

Councillor Connolly told the Gazette figures of £1.224m and £1.629m of capital spending in Maybole in 2012/13 and 2013/14 are wrong because they included spending in nearby villages and in 13/14 there was no capital spending.

in Maybole. Only £600,000 of capital spending is set for Maybole in the next five years.

In 2016/17, Girvan will get over £9m of investment, including £3.5m for the new pool, £3m for a new Invergarven school, £50,000 for new windows at Girvan Primary as well as the council including £2.5m for Dailly’s new school in the Girvan capital spending budget.

Donald Gillies, the council’s head of property and risk, said: “The programme reflects the need to take a planned and managed approach to capital investment in a way that balances needs and priorities against the funding available.

“The majority of the housing revenue account capital programme relates to capital expenditure on individual properties and we invest £10m each year to modernise a whole range of council houses. Council houses in Maybole and Girvan are very much part of that programme and benefit from this investment.”