What we do

1. We’re landlords

Formed in 1975, we provide housing and help to people in need throughout Leith and north Edinburgh. We have now invested over £210m in the area and over 4,000 people currently call one of our 2,850 properties ‘home’.
We work closely with our customers to make Leith an even better place to live, work and visit. To help us achieve this, we have four strategic goals:

To make the PoLHA organisation and service delivery great

To make the physical infrastructure, including affordable housing, and environment of Leith great

To contribute towards making the availability of economic opportunity in Leith great

To contribute towards making the social fabric of the community in Leith great

Photo of Leith Fort.

2. We’re developers

Port of Leith Housing Association is actively involved in the regeneration of Leith and north Edinburgh. Since it was established in 1975, the Association has invested more than £192m in the area, using a combination of grant funding from Scottish Government and City of Edinburgh Council, and private finance. In addition to building new homes, Port of Leith is committed to long-term investment in the local community and is engaged in a variety of initiatives.

Our development team delivers a range of housing options and tenures, including homes for social and mid market rent.

Persevere Developments Limited was created in 2010 to help generate more mid market rental opportunities in Edinburgh. A wholly owned private subsidiary of Port of Leith Housing Association, it allows greater flexibility in funding, leasing and development than the parent Association’s charitable status would otherwise allow. This means we can build more homes faster so that people can live in high-quality, affordable homes in areas they want to live.

Download the PDL business plan 2015-2020

Photo of people playing rounders in a park.

3. We invest in our community

Quay Community Improvements is a social enterprise set up by Port of Leith Housing Association. Profits generated through a range of commercial activities run by the enterprise are being put back into physical, social and economic regeneration opportunities in Leith and surrounding areas.

The Group’s ambition is to make Leith the best place to be. Quay’s four strategic goals fully support this.

  1. To make the Quay CIC organisation and service delivery great
  2. To make the physical infrastructure and the environment of Leith great
  3. To contribute to making the availability of economic opportunity in Leith great
  4. To contribute towards making the social fabric of the community in Leith

For more information please contact 0131 554 0403 or email info@polha.co.uk


4. We help you succeed

Community Works provides assistance to people living in Leith or north Edinburgh who are looking to get into work or find great volunteering opportunities. We particularly welcome enquiries from Port of Leith Housing Association tenants. Our job is to help people realise that there are things that they can do, and to help them identify for themselves what they want to do and get them there.

If you are looking for help yourself please telephone  Rachel Hutton on 0131 553 8784  or email community.works@polha.co.uk.

If you are an organisation wishing to make a referral please complete the referral form below and email it to community.works@polha.co.uk.

Download referral form

You will be contacted within 3 working days. Alternatively, if you wish to speak to someone please email rachel.hutton@polha.co.uk.

5. Community initiatives

Photo of young tenants learning street art.

Through a number of activities we are aiming to improve the economic, social and environmental circumstances of the people living in the areas we work. Here are some of ways we are doing this

  • The Ripple project
  • Dr Bell’s Family Centre
  • Changeworks
  • YWCA Edinburgh
  • Scottish Government
  • City of Edinburgh Council
  • Multi-Cultural Family Base
  • Pilmeny Development Project
  • Big Lottery Fund
  • Leith Neighbourhood Partnership
  • Bethany Christian Trust
Community development

In terms of community development, we are focused on creating a sense of place, reducing social isolation, promoting volunteering and supporting the most vulnerable. We are achieving this by:

  • Helping young people, ethnic minorities and vulnerable adults to develop social skills and confidence. In order to move into them into volunteering, training, work experience and eventually into permanent work
  • Building on the support available for individuals to maximise incomes, manage a budget and reduce any debt
  • Making better use of our sheltered housing schemes and community centres to promote volunteering and reduce the isolation of our community.
Community support budget

Port of Leith Housing Association has a budget of £6,000 to help support local Community Initiatives. This budget is also used to assist in progressing projects. The application process is simple with a standard application form.

For full details please view the Small Grant Guidelines – if you wish to make an application, the form can be downloaded here too.

Small grant guidelines

Download (PDF)

Small grant application form

Download (PDF)

Commercial lets

We also manage a number of commercial lets, including the Restalrig Lochend Community Hub, Dr Bell’s Family Centre, the Pilmeny Development Project, the Buchanan Street Social Centre, The Junction and 33 Dalmeny Street.

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