Russell Homes has started work on a new development of 46 new homes at a vacant brownfield site at Heywood in Rochdale, Greater Manchester.

Photograph of Cedar Gardens partners with local MP
Work at Cedar Gardens gets underway (L-R) Alastair Cooper, Onward’s executive director for operations, Russell Homes director Daniel Kershaw, and Liz McInnes MP for Heywood and Middleton

The first sod has been cut for Cedar Gardens, a mix of two and three bedroom, detached and semi-detached properties, aimed at helping local people get onto the housing ladder.

We are working closely with housing association Onward which will take 16 of the properties for shared ownership, affordable rent and rent-to-buy. It will be Onward’s first new build scheme in Heywood, and the first homes are set for completion by May 2019.

The project will regenerate a two-acre site in Cedar Avenue in the heart of the town’s residential area. Currently owned by Rochdale Borough Council, the site is to be acquired by the partnership. Homes England has contributed around £500,000 to the £8million development as part of its drive to support brownfield regeneration.

Liz McInnes, MP for Heywood and Middleton, was there to mark the official ‘groundbreaking’ along with representatives from Russell Homes and Onward.

She said: “Heywood desperately needs high quality new housing at an affordable price for both buyers and renters. I am pleased to see this development getting underway; regenerating a brownfield site, and with the promise of providing local people with the chance to purchase or rent a new home within their own community.”

Cedar Gardens will provide a range of purchasing options. Russell Homes will retain 30 for sale on the open market all of which will be eligible for the Government-backed Help to Buy equity loan scheme. The properties have yet to be launched for sale but are likely to start from around £130,000, broadly in line with the borough’s average house price*. Onward will sell six under shared ownership and another 10 will be available for rent-to-buy or affordable rent.

Alastair Cooper, executive director for operations at Onward, said: “We have been actively seeking a development partner to help us deliver quality new housing within the communities we serve. Russell Homes is known for quality, in terms of design, specification and materials, and has a track record of working in partnership with housing associations. Cedar Gardens is perfectly located to support the Heywood community with a selection of properties for both rent and shared ownership.”

Daniel Kershaw, Russell Homes director, said: “This development is a great example of how a public and private partnership can bring benefits for a community and meet a very specific housing need. Working together with Onward and Rochdale Council, we are investing £8million to deliver 46 new family homes that will be available for local people to have the choice to rent or to buy.”

Councillor Neil Emmott, cabinet member for housing and environment at Rochdale Borough Council, said: ”This brownfield site has been vacant for a number of years, so we’re pleased to see it being brought back into use. This project will create attractive new housing for the local community and will also have shared ownership options to make it easier for first time buyers in the area to get onto the housing ladder, which is really good news.”

For more information on working with Russell Homes contact the land team on sales@russellhomes.co.uk