‘This is my dream home, I’m so happy’ – The first of our 600 homes at Lea Castle are handed over to customers
The first of 600 homes being built at our Lea Castle development in Kidderminster have been handed over to customers.
We are working with Vistry Partnerships to develop the 49-hectare site which will take eight years to complete.
Rebecca Evans is one of the first people to move into the £137m development. She said she is over the moon and hopes to live at Lea Castle for years.
She said: “I love this house so much – it’s my dream home!
“I cried when I was offered the property, they were happy tears, and I still can’t believe it’s ours. I feel incredibly lucky because I have been given a new build to live in with my little boy. It’s amazing!”
Rebecca was previously renting privately in Kidderminster but after being registered disabled, and living in a property that couldn’t be adapted, she contacted the council and was offered one of our homes at Lea Castle.
Rebecca, who said she hopes to be able to adapt the property in the future if her needs require it, is living with her six-year-old son Fin.
She said: “My home means everything to me, it’s going to change our lives.
“We feel we will have security here and the main thing for my son is the garden. He loves the outdoors and it’s a quiet place for him to play.
“There is also a park being built next to our new house which he will love when it’s completed and as it’s right outside the door, I will be able to take him to it.”
Work first started on site in the summer of 2020. When finished the development will be made up of 240 affordable homes – 59 social rent, 100 affordable rent and 81 shared ownership – and 360 outright sale through a joint venture with Vistry Partnerships.
Our Executive Director of Development Nick Byrne said: “It’s lovely to hear that Rebecca and her son, Fin, are so happy and excited about their new home.
“We love hearing how much a new home means to our customers – at Citizen we are committed to building new homes in communities across the West Midlands so we can give more people a foundation for life.
“Rebecca’s home is one of the first affordable homes ready at the site and we are looking forward to handing over more homes to customers over the coming months and years.”
The site has extensive history including being used as a prisoner of war camp and military camp in World War Two and the site was occupied by the Royal Army Pay Corps until 1960.
From the 1960s to 2008 the site was used as an NHS hospital and a care home for people who suffering with mental illness. Some of the buildings remained in use until 2014.
Once the site is finished, it will provide more affordable housing than is required by the local planning authority.
Managing Director at Vistry Partnerships Darren Beale said: “We’re pleased to be working with Citizen again on another exciting housing development.
“The development will provide a range of new affordable homes, enhance the existing landscaping and boost economic growth in the area.
“It is great to see people like Rebecca enjoying their new homes so much, this is what makes the job so worthwhile.”
Our Lea Castle development is one of four sites we are working on with Vistry Partnerships and in total all the sites will provide 1,000 homes.
The other sites include 103 homes at Ridge Hill near Stourbridge, 246 homes at Churchfields in Kidderminster and 87 homes at York Road.
Last year we also completed 109 affordable homes at our Hall Green development with VistryPartnerships, which was built on the former greyhound track.