Oldham approves 99-home Vernon Gardens

The brownfield scheme is the first development by Warrington-based housebuilder Kellen Homes.

The houses will be built on the former site of the Vernon Works mill in Royton and will be a mix of 49 affordable homes and 50 market ones. Houses will have between two and four bedrooms, front and rear gardens and off-street car parking.

Great Places Housing Group is working with Kellen Homes on the project, which stretches out across 5.5 acres.

Homes will be released for sale in January 2022, with the development expected to complete later that spring.

Oldham Council signed off the scheme at its 10 October planning meeting, to the approval of Oldham’s cabinet member for housing Cllr Hannah Roberts.

“Oldham Council has worked hard to deliver a Brownfield First policy as part of our determination to both deliver the homes needed by Oldham residents and to meet housing targets set by the government,” Roberts said.

“This redevelopment of the Vernon Works site will help us to do this, providing a mix of affordable homes and homes for sale,” she continued.

“I know that homes in Royton get snapped up as soon as they come on the market so there clearly is demand for new homes. I particularly welcome the affordable homes that will be managed by Great Places and the investment in Royton by Kellen Homes.”

Kellen Homes chief executive Ian Kelley called the approval a “key milestone” for the company.

“Kellen Homes is moving forward at pace, this is the first of numerous projects for the company and we are actively looking for opportunities to create new partnerships and increase the supply of new homes in the North West,” he said.

Great Places Housing Group director of development Helen Spencer said she hoped that Vernon Gardens would be “the first of many projects we’ll deliver in partnership across the North West to provide communities with much needed affordable homes”.

“Bringing brownfield sites back into use by building mixed tenure communities is a shared ambition of both organisations and the backbone of our successful partnership,” Spencer said. “Vernon Gardens is the latest in a string of projects for Great Places within Oldham, where we continue to experience high demand and need for our homes.”

Kellen Homes purchased the Vernon Works site for £3.5m in March from investor The Character Group.

Vernon Gardens was designed by Baldwin Design Consultancy. The development team includes Avison Young on planning, Eddisons on transport, and Betts Hydro on flood risk and drainage management.

Rachel Hacking Ecology is the ecology consultant, while Tba landscape architects is the arboricultural impact consultant.

Other consultants include Hepworth Acoustics on noise impact, E3P on ground conditions and Award Energy Consultants on sustainability.

Kellen Homes was founded in 2020. Its primary shareholder is Renaker-owner Daren Whitaker.

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