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High demand for homes built by Norwich City Council housing company

Norwich Regeneration Company Published on Thursday, 8th October 2020

The council’s commitment to building quality, affordable and energy efficient homes where they are most needed is paying off as more properties are completed and sold at Rayne Park.

A total of 31 houses were put onto the open market in July this year at the city council-owned Bowthorpe site, with all now sold subject to contract. The majority of properties have been snapped up by first time buyers.

Rayne Park is being developed by the council’s wholly owned property development company – Norwich Regeneration Company – which was set up to enable the council to fulfil its commitment to providing high quality and affordable housing for the city. Two new non-executive directors with a strong track record in housing have recently been appointed to the board of the company, in order to provide additional support and expertise.

Working in this way allows the council to ensure properties meet the needs of Norwich residents. In the first build phase, which was completed last year, 18 of the 79 properties were let to tenants through the council’s Home Options scheme which houses those who are at risk of becoming homeless. A further 31 homes were added to the council’s social housing stock this year, with the remainder of the 79 properties made available for private sale and rent.

In keeping with the council’s drive to provide eco-efficient homes, all the properties at Rayne Park have either been built to Passivhaus standards or been Passivhaus certified – as seen in the council’s award-winning Goldsmith Street development which won the prestigious Stirling Prize in 2019.

Mike Stonard, chair of Norwich Regeneration Company said: “It’s great to see the community taking shape at Rayne Park. The quality and eco-credentials of the new homes is excellent.

“We’re also delighted that we’re helping first time homeowners to get on the property ladder by offering affordable homes. These sales demonstrate the huge potential and flexibility of the company, despite the difficulties posed by the pandemic.  I’m also pleased that two new non-executive directors with a track record in housing have been appointed to the board, which will further strengthen the company.”

Councillor Gail Harris, deputy leader and cabinet member for social housing said: “The new community at Rayne Park will be a fantastic place to live and I’m delighted that we now have 49 new council homes on the development.”

“Providing new council homes, as well as affordable homes has been identified as being a vital part of the council’s recovery from Covid-19, as well as being part of our long-term housing strategy.”

Moving forward the company is currently building another 74 properties which are due to be completed by August 2021 – this would take the total number of homes to be built on the Rayne Park development to 153. The site has the capacity to build out 1,000 new homes in the coming years.