Construction starts on 30 affordable homes for Mendip locals in Evercreech

Construction has begun on a smart new rural development of 30 affordable homes for rent and shared ownership at Maesdown Road in Evercreech, near Shepton Mallet.

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Working in partnership with Mendip District Council, Stonewater is financing the scheme with additional grant funding from the Homes and Communities Agency. The sensitively designed new village homes will be offered to local people.

The Stonewater development will provide 20 energy-efficient one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom homes for affordable rent, and 10 two- and three- bedroom homes for shared ownership.

These low-cost village homes come at a time when the average price of a home in the area is now ten times the average salary*, and typical monthly private sector rents are over a third (34%) of local earnings. The shared ownership scheme gives local people a chance to get onto the property ladder, while affordable renting provides them with the opportunity to rent a good-quality home near to their friends, family and place of work, at a price they can afford.

“This important village scheme aims to address a critical shortage of good-quality, affordable housing for local people living and working in the area,” says Phillippa Yeates, Development Manager for Stonewater. “If local people continue to be priced out of the area, it will be disastrous for the local economy and Evercreech. We hope that our new affordable village homes will add significant value and vitality to the community.”

The development, which is due for completion in April next year, is being delivered in partnership with Mendip District Council and building contractors and developers, Winsley White.

Nina Richards, Affordable Housing Officer for Mendip District Council, says: “This is an exciting development opportunity for Evercreech and I am delighted to see work actually beginning on site, to deliver 30 affordable homes.

"We began looking at affordable housing for Evercreech in 2011, following some consultation work with the community. Rising house prices has made purchasing and renting homes very difficult for people, especially in rural villages. So this will be a great opportunity for local people, keen to live in the area.

"Providing affordable homes is an ongoing priority for the council and we continue to work proactively with our development partners to ensure the housing being developed in the district meets the needs of our rural communities. We are especially proud of the partnership between Stonewater, Mendip District Council, Winsley White Construction and the Parish Council in particular, who have shown huge support and commitment to this project from the start.

"The impact of these types of developments have long lasting benefits. It allows people to be part of the community to which they have a connection and keep families together.”

Stonewater currently owns and manages 233 properties across the Mendip District.