Affordable Housing Scheme Opening in Wivelsfield

12/06/2013
Sarah Osborne, District Councillor, Lewes District Council, officially opened an attractive new affordable Hastoe housing development at the end of May, called Shepherds Close in Wivelsfield.

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Caption: The opening event at Wivelsfield

Following the successful completion of Hastoe’s previous development in 2009, known as 1-8 Woods Ground, Wivelsfield Parish Council invited Hastoe and the Rural Housing Enabler to pursue a further affordable housing project. A survey highlighted a housing need in the area and, as a result, 14 homes were provided on land made available by Mr & Mrs Brook.

The scheme has achieved Code for Sustainable Homes Level 3. Features include improved insulation and air tightness, water saving taps and shower fittings, low energy lighting, recycling facilities, bicycle storage and water butts.

As a rural exception site development, priority for the affordable houses is for local people now and in the future. The tenure mix of the homes is as below.

For rent
2 x one bedroom flats
4 x two bedroom flats
2 x two bedroom houses
3 x three bedroom houses
1 x four bedroom house

For shared ownership
2 x two bedroom houses

Sarah Osborne,District Councillor, Lewes District Council, said:“There is a chronic shortage of affordable homes across our area. The whole community can suffer from the lack of affordable housing. With less young people and families able to afford to stay in the villages they grew up in, schools, local shops and local facilities are often under-used and are in danger of being closed. There’s also an impact on local businesses and agriculture, which sometimes struggle to recruit the workers they need to survive.

 "Older people in larger properties sometimes want to downsize but the shortage of affordable housing means they have almost no chance of finding smaller properties. New affordable housing would help them to stay in their community. With the number of older people classed as disabled expected to double by 2021 so will the number of staff working in social care have to double. Many of those care workers will need to live in rural areas, so they’re able to assist elderly people locally to stay in their own homes and communities. 

“Not only has the hard work of Hastoe, the Parish Council and the District Council enabled local people to stay in or move back to the area in which they grew up or work in but you have also provided a really well designed scheme with, lovely spacious homes that blend fantastically into the village. The new residents are all pleased with the new homes and the feedback from the local community has been extremely positive.” 

Sue Chalkley, Chief Executive at Hastoe, said: “We are very pleased to have delivered these much-needed homes for the community, where local private rents and home ownership can be out of reach for some families. At Hastoe, we can deliver homes that people can afford, we invest in people and communities and we are in it for the long-term.” 

With support from the Homes and Communities Agency and Lewes District Council the homes were completed in 2012. 

Housing Association: Hastoe
Parish Council: Wivelsfield
Rural Housing Enabler: Action in Rural Sussex
Local authority: Lewes District Council
Architect: ECE Architects
Contractor: Provian Construction Limited
Employer’s Agent: Calford Seaden LLP

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