HOUSING minister Esther McVey has been to West Yorkshire to visit a UNESCO World Heritage site, but she wasn’t playing tourist – she was up North to see a local housing association’s flagship development.
McVey, accompanied by Shipley MP, Philip Davies, visited Salts Mews, situated next to Saltaire Village, near Shipley. The model village was built in the 19th Century by textile patriarch and philanthropist Sir Titus Salt to house workers at his nearby Salts Mill.
Salts Mews is a more modern affair; developed by housing provider Incommunities, it consists of family homes in a mix of tenures. Four of the homes were released for shared ownership, four for outright sale and the remaining three offered through the Government’s Rent to Buy scheme.
“It’s been wonderful to see how Incommunities has transformed this local site into attractive, high quality and affordable homes,” said McVey. “The homes have been carefully designed to complement the neighbouring homes of historic Saltaire and provide the right sort of homes that meet local need and offer choice, whether that’s homes for rent, to buy or shared ownership.”
The development next to the World Heritage Site has been supported by Bradford Council and Homes England, with the latter providing £224,000 in grant towards its construction.
The homes are part of two developments on cleared fire station sites given to Incommunities in a ‘land swap’ with West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service. Another 11 “affordable” homes have been completed at a former station site in Idle, North Bradford.
“We were delighted to welcome the Housing Minister, Esther McVey and local MP, Philip Davies to see this flagship development,” said Geraldine Howley, group chief executive of Incommunities.
“As a group we are on track to deliver 250 affordable homes over the next two years and over 1,000 homes by 2025. Our in-house development team continue to work hard to develop exciting partnerships with local housebuilders which offer people real choice whilst increasing the housing supply across the district.”
Davies, a Conservative MP, said: “It is vital that social housing providers like Incommunities, developers and councils work together to increase the supply of high-quality homes for local people on brownfield sites. I would like to commend Geraldine and her team on delivering this development, which provides a mix of tenures to help people onto the property ladder.”
Main Image: Housing minster Esther McVey visits Salts Mews, Saltaire, West Yorkshire.