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Eco update – sustainable schemes in Somerset, Hampshire and London

This development update is environmentally focused, with 51 high-quality schemes coming to Somerset, 120 net-zero homes suited for the retired community and a sustainable residential scheme expected in London.

Galion acquires site for 51 sustainable homes in Somerset

Boutique developer Galion has acquired land from Flower & Hayes Developments with full planning consent to deliver 51 brand-new starter and family homes in the village of Baltonsborough, Somerset.


The acquisition comes as part of its commitment to delivering much-needed housing within the area and follows successful sales at Galion’s flagship development, Lakeview and Lakeview Court, in nearby Keinton Mandeville.

Thought to be the birthplace of St. Dunstan, the new development will be named St. Dunstan’s Mede, with prices ranging from £399,950 up to £1.2 million. First-time buyers will be able to utilise Galion’s incentive scheme with the offer to contribute up to £1,000 towards legal fees, whilst fifteen will be affordable homes.

With a gross development value (GDV) of £19.8 million, the properties will range from two-bedroom single-story dwellings to five-bedroom detached family houses. These have been designed as ‘traditional characterful’ family homes, built using traditional materials such as the Somerset Blue Lias stone to ensure Galion’s vision of charm and character is upheld throughout the façade.

Internally, the interior design plans have ensured a modern and homely feel with a traditional country twist to provide a combination of warm styling, high-quality finishes and fittings as well as well-appointed kitchens and bathrooms.

Other amenities include smart technology, generous gardens and super-fast fibre optic cables to every home ensuring good broadband speeds for remote working, as the ability to work from home and outdoor space becomes high in the list of priorities for the post-Covid-19 buyer.

In line with its strict ethos as ‘a force for good in the construction industry’, Galion will be using sustainable building materials and techniques to reduce their carbon footprint on-site, with each home designed to play its part in protecting the environment and enhancing the local area too.

Sustainable aspects will include; maximising passive solar gain with minimal heat loss through insulation, electric car charging points and high standards of build quality that consistently outperform standard building regulations for air testing.

As the Blue Lias stone used has been quarried locally, Galion will also save a vast amount of co2 emissions by avoiding lorries delivering from further afield.

Tim Barnes, managing director of Galion, says: “We have created a strong demand for high-quality new build houses in Somerset with buyers asking for reservations before we even start construction. We look forward to repeating that success at St. Dunstan’s Mede, working closely with the local community in order to provide housing our buyers will be proud to call home, whilst helping to revitalise the area and economy too.”

“The pandemic has not dampened our ambitions and with people adopting a new way of life with working from home combined with country escapism, residents here will feel they have the perfect lifestyle balance, with London in close reach when needed.”

Second net-zero retirement community coming to Hampshire

Inspired Villages, the later-living operator of UK retirement villages, has acquired a site in Horndean, Hampshire, to deliver 120 new net-zero carbon regulated energy homes for over-65s.

The acquisition follows announcements earlier this year that Inspired Villages will be delivering the UK’s first two operationally net-zero retirement communities – Millfield Green, Bedfordshire, and Ampfield Meadows, Hampshire.

The village in Horndean will support the environment through renewable energy generation, on-site photovoltaics, EV-charging, improved building fabric and insulation, mechanical heat vent recovery units and air-source heat pump technology.

Backed by a joint venture partnership between Legal & General and NatWest Group Pension Fund, Inspired’s portfolio is set to grow to 34 villages – including the scheme in Horndean – over the next 10 years.

This ambitious pipeline aligns with their commitment to addressing the severe shortage of age-appropriate homes in the UK while also meeting the need for eco-friendly, sustainable housing. Research shows there are 12.4 million over-65s in the UK but only 78,000 housing with care units, meanwhile the number of over 65s is set to increase to 18 million by 2040.

Inspired Villages will be working in partnership with Highwood Group to submit a reserved matters application for the nine-acre site in Horndean. Work is due to start in 2022 once approved.

Alongside 120 stylish, age-appropriate apartments, the development will also include a village centre with a focus on wellbeing with facilities including a swimming pool, exercise studio, gym, library, craft room, restaurant, bar/café, and a cinema room so future residents can enjoy an ‘outstanding’ lifestyle in retirement. The fitness facilities and restaurant will also be open to the local Horndean community on a membership basis to add to the vibrancy of the village.

Commenting on the purchase, Jamie Bunce, chief executive officer of Inspired Villages, says: “Our recent land purchase for our Horndean community is extremely exciting for us and a vital step in both our portfolio expansion and continued commitments towards net-zero, creating a village with clear environmental benefits as we progress towards a carbon-free future.”

“We know there is a growing need for age-appropriate homes in Hampshire, and this recent purchase and achieved outline planning permission from the council allows us to effectively supply this demand and support the physical and mental wellbeing of older people in the area. The project will allow us to provide suitable, safe, secure and stimulating environments for retirees, helping them live, healthy, independent lives for longer.”

Inspired Villages, which has already established six highly popular retirement villages across the UK, has also signed an Option Agreement for a scheme in South Yorkshire and anticipates the submission of its planning application next year.

London set for £19.8m environmentally-focused resi scheme

Specialist real estate development finance provider Maslow Capital has completed a £19.8 million senior financing package to support Marson Property’s 72-unit residential scheme in Haringey, London.

The borough is a popular residential location with strong transport connections to Central London and a forecasted five-year house price increase of 27%.

The scheme is set to revive disused railway land, creating an ecological habitat park in the vicinity of the project that will support local and protected species through the establishment of wildflower and long grass meadows, wildlife-friendly planting of fauna and a small pond.

Eco update – sustainable schemes in Somerset, Hampshire and London

The ecological park will be separated from the neighbouring residential development using fencing and hedgerows, with special access given to conservationists.

This carefully planned project, which was introduced to Maslow by Seaford Finance LLP, will consist of 72 units spread across four blocks, ranging from 5-6 stories, each positioned on top of a grounded stone plinth. Of the 72 units, 16 will be affordable.

On the ground floor, gabion walls will create a sturdy base that helps bed the scheme into the landscape. Cedar shingle cladding will be installed to reflect the ecological setting. Green roofs will also offer habitat for existing ecology.

Residents of the property will have access to electronic car charging points, 29 parking spaces at semi-basement level and storage for 130 bicycles. Continuing with the project’s environmental commitments, the completed scheme will reduce its energy reliance through the use of a combined heat and power system and solar panels.

Ellis Sher, co-founder and chief executive officer at Maslow Capital, comments: “It is important we understand that our lending practices and allocation of capital have positive wider environmental and social impacts.”

“We are delighted to support this project which has an affordable housing element and purposeful environmental considerations that integrate the scheme with its surroundings and reduce its overall energy reliance. We will continue to welcome projects with these forward-thinking characteristics.”


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