Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Highland homes plea for refugees

Highland Council leader Margaret Davidson.
Highland Council leader Margaret Davidson.

Landlords with vacant accommodation are being urgently sought to house Syrian refugees heading for the Highlands this winter.

The council reaffirmed yesterday that the region would welcome “up to 30 families – about 100 refugees” from the war-torn country as part of the UK refugee resettlement programme.

They are expected to reach the Highlands early in the new year.

A council working group has been established involving its officers, NHS Highland, Police Scotland, the Department for Work and Pensions and the voluntary sector.

A representative has also attended briefings with the local authorities’ organisation Cosla as part of a coordinated Scottish response.

A council spokeswoman said house owners wishing to register an available property for consideration should visit the authority’s website.

Council leader Margaret Davidson said: “We’re keen to hear from people who have property available and could assist us in housing refugees when they arrive in the Highlands.

“Ideally, we’re interested in property that is available for longer term rentals.

“We will have to match up available housing with other essential services, so we might not be able to use every property offered. But we would be pleased to hear from you. We will provide more detailed information and advice to people who register their properties on our website.”

The precise timing of refugee arrivals in the north will be guided by the UK Government.

Inverness SNP councillor and former soldier Allan Duffy told yesterday’s full council meeting in Inverness that Prime Minister David Cameron had “taken on board” his suggestion, in a letter, that redundant military barracks around the UK be made available for refugee use for educational purposes.

“The key thing is we must not take our eyes away from the people already on our housing allocation that are waiting to be homed as well,” he said.

Fellow city councillor Ken MacLeod, a descendant of a family that suffered as a result of the Highland Clearances, was among several members promising a warm reception for the displaced Syrians.

“A lot of the refugees are people from a rural environment and, my goodness, have we got a rural environment that could do with an injection in the Highlands,” he said.

Already a subscriber? Sign in