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Great Places making an impact in the Valley

POSTED: 16/09/2021

petre wood

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The ribbon has recently been cut on the Ribble Valley’s latest affordable housing scheme delivered by Great Places Housing Group.

Ribble Valley Mayor Tony Austin officially opened Phase 3 of the Petre Wood Estate in Billington, with VIPs including Great Places Housing Group CEO Matt Harrison, which features 31 affordable two and three-bedroom houses and bungalows for shared ownership and rent.

The development was made possible by a £1.1million cash boost from Homes England, which assured all of the properties would be affordable.

Mr Harrison said: “We are working tirelessly to provide affordable housing solutions across the North and are delighted to have worked in partnership with Ribble Valley Borough Council to address the borough’s chronic shortage of affordable homes.

“Petre Wood is a great example of how partnership working can bring about fantastic outcomes and we are delighted to have delivered Phase 3 of this scheme.”

Ribble Valley Mayor Tony Austin added: “I am particularly delighted to officially open Phase 3 of Petre Wood, because it is in the ward I represent.

“There is a pressing need for affordable housing in Ribble Valley and we are working closely with registered housing providers to address the problem.”

A further 80 properties for affordable rent, shared ownership, discount sale, rent-to-buy for the over-55s will be available in Ribble Valley to local households with annual earnings of less than £80,000 over the coming months.

The properties, including two and three-bedroom houses, and two-bedroom bungalows, will be available in Clitheroe, Barrow, Langho and Longridge.

All new developments in Ribble Valley have to comprise 30 per cent affordable properties – half of them specifically for older people – that attract a mix of people of all ages and circumstances to help create a balanced community.

Discount sale properties are available to people with a local connection for up to 40 per cent below the market value, while shared ownership allows purchasers to buy between 25 and 75 per cent of a property, with an affordable rent on the remainder.

New homes are also available for affordable rent below the market value in line with the local housing allowance, while rent-to-buy allows people to access shared ownership with a minimal deposit by ‘gifting’ them one per cent  of the value of the property.

Mark Hindle, chairman of Ribble Valley Borough Council’s health and housing committee, said: “The provision of affordable housing, particularly for younger and older residents, is one of the biggest challenges we face.

“We are working closely with housing providers to address this issue and delivered 119 affordable units last year, of which 14 were in rural villages.

“Affordable properties are built to a high specification, with modern bathrooms, contemporary fitted kitchens, turfed gardens and dedicated parking.

“They are an ideal way for some eligible residents to access the housing market and we are delighted that properties will soon be available in areas where affordable homes are particularly scarce.”

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