Benwell House, the new property developed by Spelthorne Borough Council and run by Knowle Green Estates, is close to being fully occupied, three months after being formally opened to residents.
The first phase of this project is part of the Council’s plans to relieve housing pressure in the local area by providing good quality and affordable housing. The development converted disused commercial offices at Benwell House in Green Street into 55 one and two-bedroom apartments.
Planning permission is currently being sought for phase two of the project which will comprise a further 39 units, of which 20 are planned to be let at affordable rents.
The Council has a number of other projects which are close to completion, or in the process of going through the planning application process.
Practical completion of the West Wing, Knowle Green is expected in early September with residents moving in soon after. In 2018, the Council reconfigured its office space to free up 43% of its Knowle Green headquarters and, over the last few years, has been converting these into 25 affordable rental housing flats. All the apartments will be let on rents of up to 80% of the equivalent market rent through the Council’s Housing Options team.
The White House site on Kingston Road, Ashford is a hostel designed for single homeless people, including those with complex needs, who often struggle to find accommodation. Local applicants will be prioritised through the Council’s Housing Options. The hostel, where construction completes this month, will include 27 en-suite rooms with shared kitchen and living facilities as well as space for education and training on the ground floor and 4 move on units. https://www.spelthorne.gov.uk/whitehouse
Harper House, which is set for completion this month, will be a significant improvement on the old building offering best-in-class emergency housing for up to 20 local families. The facility will have twenty self-contained rooms of various sizes. Completion of the Harper House is expected this month, ready to welcome new residents from early autumn 2021 onwards. https://www.spelthorne.gov.uk/article/19616/Harper-House-planning-approved-October-2019
Spelthorne Borough Council is also committed to the redevelopment of a car park for new key worker homes on Victory Close in Ashford. The development, which will be 100% affordable housing, will be prioritised for ‘key workers’ in the Borough. This site was specifically purchased for this purpose from the hospital and subsequently we entered into an explicit agreement to provide an entire site for key workers and NHS staff. We intend to bring this to the planning committee in October 2021.