Construction company Mitie who have been modernising Eildon’s bathrooms, kitchens and heating systems since April 2015 came to the end of their contract last week.
During this time they have been making improvements to nearly 500 homes across the Borders on a contract valued at £2.75 million. In some cases, the work involved the renewal of kitchen units and sanitary ware in the bathrooms and installing new air sourced heat pumps (ASHPs). Where there were no showers, over-bath showers were installed and tenants in ground floor flats who wanted them had step-in showers fitted. The contract was initially to be carried out over a 4-year period but given the efficient and diligent manner of this joint working arrangement, the Association decided to accelerate the project and add further properties.
The Mitie team led by Foreman Jock Marshall commented on how much he and his team have enjoyed working with Eildon.
Jock said “I have been working for over 10 years with Mitie and I can honestly say this is the best contract I have ever worked on. Especially working with the tenants in the Borders who have been great and working with the staff at Eildon – David Hastie and Heather Rankine who were terrific.”
Such has been the success of the working relationship, the modernisation project is finishing ahead of schedule, helping to make considerable savings. Not only that, the agreement with Mitie Property Services required them to employ a number of locally based people who were seeking training or experience in the construction or maintenance related work. Through this joint project, youngster Ryan Bell was given an apprenticeship and has worked with the Mitie team for the duration and one of Eildon’s tenants, Robert Hutton, not only got a new kitchen, but also got a job with Mitie working as a tiler full-time!
Ryan Bell said, “This work experience has been life-changing for me. This is my first real job and it has shown me that I want to continue working in this line of work. I have really learned so much from working alongside Jock and such an experienced team.”
One of the last tenants to benefit from the modernisation contract was Sandra Ballantyne from Selkirk, who said, “It was a very positive experience for us. They were so considerate and willing to make it easier for us whilst the work was completed. They worked as a team which is rare and they even cleaned up after themselves. They showed positive pride in their work and that can only be good for everyone.”
John Duncan, Director of Property Assets at Eildon said, “I would like to take this opportunity to express, on behalf of Eildon Housing Association, our thanks to Mitie who delivered this project ahead of programme and under budget. Carrying out extensive works in occupied homes can be challenging, however the Mitie team, led by Jock Marshall and working in conjunction with our Clerk of Works David Hastie, constantly delivered a high-quality product and continuously achieved excellent customer satisfaction ratings”.