“As a child, my parents had no means to buy their own home, social housing was a lifesaver. Renting from the private sector would not have been an option because of elevated rents. Council housing was the norm when I was young and people who were owner occupiers were something of a rarity.

“Now that I am in my fifties, I cherish the stability that social housing gave my family. I have just moved into a council flat in Edinburgh after being on the waiting list for nearly 20 years, spending all that time renting privately. Security of tenure and a more manageable rent have once again proved so vital to me. I have recently joined my local Community Council and have been able to see and comment on a number of planning applications involving a large number of ‘build to rent’ properties, purpose built student accommodation and so called affordable residential units. It is therefore not surprising we are facing a housing emergency.

“Nothing can replace the qualities and characteristics of social housing, particularly that built and managed by local authorities. Now that Scotland has abolished ‘right to buy’, it is high time we began to see the construction of social housing as an urgent priority.”

Frank Geoghegan-Quinn