Scotland has led the way in the delivery of affordable housing, with almost 100,000 affordable homes delivered since 2007, including more than 68,000 for social rent, of which more than 15,000 were council homes. We want everyone in Scotland to live in a warm home that is affordable and meets their needs, which is why housing, and affordable housing in particular, has been and remains a priority for this Government.
As the member knows, we were on track to deliver 50,000 homes within this parliamentary session, and we remain committed to completing that job. Unfortunately, coronavirus got in the way. We are working with partners across the housing sector to deliver the remaining homes as quickly and safely as possible.
We make clear in “Housing to 2040” our commitment to take action so that rural and island communities have access to high-quality affordable housing in the market that has been planned alongside the economic and physical infrastructure that is required to help people live, work and thrive in those areas and to help stem rural depopulation. We have committed to continuing the £30 million rural and islands housing fund, which supports additional affordable rural and island homes as part of the wider affordable housing programme. In addition, we have announced new permitted development rights to allow for the conversion of agricultural buildings for residential and commercial uses.
This might be my last opportunity to speak, Presiding Officer, so I wish you a very happy retirement, and I wish the cabinet secretary all the best in her future endeavours. You are two cracking South Lanarkshire quines, and I will miss you greatly. [