The site of a former north-east care home destroyed by fire has been sold by a local authority.
Members of the Garioch area committee approved the sale of the former Blythewood Care Home on School Road in Port Elphinstone.
Since the blaze last year, the property had been fenced off by Aberdeenshire Council and the building was demolished just before Christmas.
Plans for the sale were approved last month in private, meaning no members of the press or public were present during the discussion.
Committee minutes from the meeting show that firm Re Fresh Living Limited has bought the site.
Minutes taken from the meeting state: “A report by the director of business services was circulated seeking approval of the sale of the former Blythewood Care Home. The committee agreed to approve the sale of the former Blythewood Care Home to Re Fresh Living Limited.”
A major investigation was launched in April last year after a fire broke out at the property.
More than 70 firefighters tackled the blaze for almost 10 hours, and at the time smoke could be seen throughout the town.
The house was converted from a private residence into a care home in the early 1950s.
However, it had been empty for more than two years after residents moved into the new £10 million Bennachie View care facility on the outskirts of Inverurie.
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A previous proposal of application notice (PoAN) had been submitted to Aberdeenshire Council that could have seen the 37-bedroom home converted into affordable flats.
The previous proposal was submitted by Lippe Architects.
Councillor Lesley Berry, who represents Inverurie and District, said she was happy the area will be brought back into use following the blaze.
She said: “I think if there is a property sitting there empty, I would much rather see it getting used.
“Affordable housing or any housing at all in a nice secluded area has got to be a gain for everyone concerned, so I’m quite happy to see it sold.
“In terms of the fire, we have just gone through the budget, which is a tortuous process, and the last thing we needed was to get additional funds allocated to demolish a building that would be sold on.”
She added that she now wanted to see the site back in use, saying: “No one wanted to see it become a ruin.”
No one from Re Fresh Living Limited was available for comment.