Edinburgh Northern and Leith MSP Ben Macpherson was among the hundreds of people who slept out in the private gardens in Charlotte Square on Thursday night to raise money for the first homeless village in Edinburgh.

The Social Bite village will be built in Granton to provide some secure living for around 20 homeless people a year. The people who live there will be supported into independent living with employment guidance and counselling over the course of a year to 15 months.

On Friday morning the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the Cabinet Secretary for Communities, Social Security and Equalities Angela Constance MSP brought out the bacon rolls to thank everyone who had taken part.

Ben Macpherson, MSP for Edinburgh Northern and Leith, said:

“The support that Social Bite receive from people for their life changing work is always inspiring, and to see so many businesses and organisations sleeping out last night, supporting this new venture (Social Bite Village) was brilliant. 

“I am delighted that the village will be based in Granton, making a positive impact locally and providing comprehensive support for around 20 of the city’s most vulnerable citizens. I’ve been assisting Josh with the village project for several months now and it’s great to see it really moving forward.

“The Social Bite Village is an innovative example of how we can better utilise derelict and underdeveloped land with temporary so-called “interwhile” solutions. As well as helping the homeless, this project can inspire other similarly imaginative housing initiatives across Scotland. It can be a catalyst for wider change and stimulate other community initiatives, local investment and creative projects, particularly in North Edinburgh.”