Flintshire Council go-ahead for £500k study into new homes’ sites


David Humphreys

FLINTSHIRE Council is to spend £500,000 investigating the feasibility of 11 proposed housing schemes.

The move is being made as part of the council’s attempts to tackle the growing number of people in need of somewhere to live, and the cabinet has approved almost £500,000 in funding so site investigation works can be carried out.

A total of 363 homes – including council houses, affordable homes and homes for purchase – could be built across Flintshire as part of the council’s Strategic Housing and Regeneration Programme (SHARP).

The proposal includes 195 council properties, 95 affordable homes and 73 properties for affordable purchase being built.

Clare Budden, chief officer, community and enterprise, said it was “a really exciting moment” for the authority.

A total of 11 sites are being considered for development, including the former Melrose Centre in Shotton, land near Penyffordd Church, Borough Grove Clinic in Flint and Maes Gwern in Mold.

One of the biggest proposed schemes is at Maes Gwern, where proposals for 160 homes are being considered. Many of these proposed homes would be available on the open market.

A number of other funding schemes are also being considered by the council for the building the homes.

At a cabinet meeting in June, 2015, approval was given to appoint Wates Living Space as the council’s development partner for five years with the aim of developing 500 homes – 200 social rented and 300 affordable – at a range of sites across the county.

With the addition of the 363 homes identified, the total programme will comprise 507 homes, which includes 277 council properties, 157 affordable rent properties and 73 affordable purchase properties.

A total of 82 council houses and 62 affordable houses have already either been built or are in the process of being built.

Cllr Bernie Attridge, deputy leader of Flintshire Council, said: “Who would have thought that at the end of this five year term we’d have reports like this?

“I thought it’d be a dream to be able to build council houses, Flintshire is leading the way.”

Cllr Chris Bithell said he was delighted that building had started four decades on from the last successful scheme he’d seen.

“The loss of that ability was deeply noted,” he added.

“This council has done more than the national government on this issue and I never thought I’d live to see the day when this returned.”

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