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New Charter gets dual boost from HCA, Moody's

20th May 2015

New Charter Group says two good reports from the HCA and Moody’s credit ratings agency have boosted its bid to build over 1,500 homes. The Homes and Communities Agency gave the group its highest rating of V1 for the 'Governance and Financial Viability' standard while Moody’s assigned an A2 rating. Chief executive Ian Munro (photo) said: “This is excellent news. We can now look forward to meeting the rising demand for quality homes for rent and have ambitious plans to build well ov...

John Prescott opens new apartment complex on Byker Estate

7th May 2015

The Byker Community Trust’s Chirton House has been officially opened by Lord Prescott after undergoing a £1.12m refurbishment. “I have heard a lot about the Byker community and this is my first opportunity to visit,” said the former deputy prime minister. “Byker is going through a considerable transformation under the BCT, and they are leading the way in social housing and community development.” The facility on the Grade II* listed Byker Estate in Newcastle has...

Knightstone celebrates beating new homes target

7th May 2015

Knightstone Housing says it has delivered nearly 1,000 new 'affordable homes' in the South West since 2011, against an original target of 878. Knightstone has worked with Alliance Homes, United Communities and SHAL Housing as part of a Key West partnership, to deliver Homes and Communities Agency funded projects in the region. Of the homes built, 831 are for affordable and social rent and 141 are for affordable home ownership. Completed at locations across Knightstone’s South West heartland, ...

Spot of bricklaying for Cameron at Lancaster development

7th May 2015

In what could be a useful skill if election results don’t go to plan, Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife Samantha laid the first brick on a new home at Story Homes’ High Wood development in Lancaster. Cameron dropped by Wednesday in the closing stages of his election campaign on a tour of the North West of England. He said: “Story Homes is a flourishing company which supports the economy, has created a number of new jobs and built new houses across the North. I am deli...

Paris looking up as striking skyscraper stares down on Left Bank

7th May 2015

Paris has overcome its distrust of tall buildings and gone for a striking 50-metre high housing scheme at Avenue de France on the capital’s famous Left Bank. Architecture and design magazine Dezeen said “these two metal-clad towers featuring stepped forms and angular balconies were designed to prove that, after years of skyscraper restrictions in Paris, height is no longer taboo”. It’s reportedly the tallest structure completed in Paris since the 1970s. Dezeen noted “its constr...

Recount demanded as 464,000,000 bricks meet housebuilding challenge

6th May 2015

By Brian ChurchDeputy Brick Editor The well-staffed Office for National Statistics has revealed that the number of bricks produced in the UK during Q1 2015 was an astonishing 464 million, higher even than the number of UKIP candidates suspended during the general election campaign. However, the ONS cautioned bricklovers that 464,000,000 was a provisional figure, raising the nightmare prospect of a recount. If confirmed, the figure is a 5% rise of 22 million bricks from the same period in 201...

Glenigan Index: Private developers 'hit the brakes' ahead of election

6th May 2015

UK construction activity had its biggest drop since the first quarter of 2013 according to industry analysts Glenigan, which said private developers had “hit the brakes” ahead of the general election. The Glenigan Index for May, which covers the value of projects starting on site during the three months to April, declined by 11% year on year as office, retail and industrial activity plummeted. In possibly brighter news, a 'slew' of private housing starts helped push starts up by 40%...

Only 1 in 10 builders believes 200,000 new homes a year is possible

29th April 2015

The battle appears to have been lost before it starts. According to estate agents Knight Frank, only 9% of housebuilders and developers believe that an annual supply of more than 200,000 new homes is possible. Around 250,000 homes a year are needed to deal with the current crisis. The annual 'Housebuilder Survey' polled over 160 housebuilders and developers across the country. Two-thirds (67%) of those in the industry believe that the maximum number of new homes which can be sustainably d...

Persimmon plans 700 homes at former Courtaulds factory

28th April 2015

Persimmon plans to build up to 700 new homes in Coventry in what it called "a £70 million facelift" for the site of the former Courtaulds factory. With the land deal finalised this week for the 19.6 hectare site off Foleshill Road, a phased regeneration of the area starts next month and offers 113 new properties in the first phase. The 'high quality new homes' will be marketed under the name of Paragon Park. Persimmon says over 1,600 jobs will be created. Andy Peters (photo), managing direc...

CIH poll shows strong public support for next government borrowing to build

23rd April 2015

Two thirds of Londoners and 60% of renters strongly support the next government borrowing money to build more homes, according to a new poll. The survey, carried out by Ipsos MORI for the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH), found that 54% of adults in England would support government borrowing to fund more affordable homes for people to buy or rent. A fifth (21%) were opposed while a quarter (24%) said they would neither support nor oppose. CIH head of policy Melanie Rees said: “We ne...