ABERDEEN, SCOTLAND – The partner of a murdered mother, Jill Barclay, has raised concerns over the lack of assistance from council leaders in his efforts to buy the property where she was killed. Leon Grant, 49, sought to purchase the derelict site to demolish it, but only managed to raise £35,000 of the required £90,000. The owner ultimately backed out of the deal, leaving Grant disillusioned with Aberdeen City Council’s lack of support.
Grant expressed his frustration with the council, claiming that officials ignored his letters and emails. He lamented the missed opportunity for the council to intervene and criticized their lack of response, stating, “It leaves a bitter taste in my mouth.” However, he did commend local councilor Graeme Lawrence for his efforts, recognizing that they faced similar challenges in their communications with the council.
The property was eventually purchased by Shahzad Hassan and a business partner for £76,000, and there are plans to renovate it into a family home. Despite the traumatic memories associated with the site, Grant expressed hope that the renovation would erase the exact spot where his partner was killed, providing a sense of closure for him and his children who live in the neighborhood.
Jill Barclay was murdered in November 2022 by Rhys Bennett, just yards from her home. Bennett was sentenced to at least 24 years in prison for the brutal attack. Grant now faces the difficult task of driving past the property regularly, mindful of the emotional burden it carries for him and his family. Despite the challenges, he remains hopeful that the renovation will bring about a positive change to the neighborhood.
Aberdeen City Council has been approached for comment regarding Grant’s allegations of negligence. As the community grapples with the aftermath of this tragedy, the renovation of the property stands as a symbol of resilience and the ongoing efforts to heal from the devastating loss of Jill Barclay.