21 March
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Planning permission will be sought to deliver the new facility on land next to Torcroft House, Whitburn after the site was approved as the preferred location by Council Executive today (21 March).

News at a glance:

  • The new residential house will provide services for children and young people and will replace Whitrigg House which is located in East Whitburn.
  • The project is being funded via the council's Capital Investment Strategy which seeks to improve local facilities and assets, and will cost approximately £1 million
  • The facility is expected to open in early 2025

Whitrigg House no longer meets Care Inspectorate's quality standards and a new purpose built building will ensure young people can be cared for in a modern facility.

Jo MacPherson, Head of Social Policy, said: "Officers have considered a range of proposals and we have concluded that this option will deliver the best results for young people and reflects the needs of young people in the future.

"The new house will be ideally situated close to Torcroft House in Whitburn and will bring under utilised land back into use. This will enable staff to move easily between the two houses, ensuring the most efficient use of resources whilst delivering the best possible outcomes and care for the children being supported. The site is also close enough to amenities to enable those young people to feel part of the community.

"Whitrigg has served young people well over the years and it will continue to be used until the new facility is completed, which is estimated to be early in 2025."

The report agreed at the Council Executive set out that the new residential house is being built on council land, in an appropriate location.  The service will engage with members of the local community to ensure positive relationships continue.

Anne McMillan, Executive councillor for Social Care, added: "I think this is a fantastic example of the council investing in the future needs of young people, most of whom are often in a vulnerable position and need support.  

"This is a unique opportunity for enhanced operational and service benefits that no other site can offer. Co-location at Torcroft House will also offer opportunities for enhanced workforce training and development and the introduction of additional professional services to support young people."