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New eco-council homes provide a bright future for tenants

Published: Friday, 25 March, 2022

Seven new eco-friendly homes for affordable rent have been built in Minchinhampton by Stroud District Council.

The properties in Summersfield Road include one three-bedroom house, two two-bedroom houses and four one-bedroom flats. The properties were built on the site of a former MUGA (multi use games area) and a block of council garages that had both fallen into disrepair.

Built by Beard Construction to high environmental specifications, the buildings are highly insulated, fitted with solar panels and air source heat pumps, resulting in an EPC rating of A.

Local wildlife is catered for with features including bat and bird boxes, hedgehog holes and insect hotels.

The flats have bike storage, access to a rotary washing line and allocated parking spaces.

New tenant, Deborah Escamilla met SDC Leader Cllr Doina Cornell and Chair of Housing Committee Mattie Ross when she moved in. She said:

“I feel very fortunate to have been given a home that my daughter and I can live in, which will provide the stability and security we have been needing after a very rough period. 

“I cannot express enough how grateful I am to all those who fought hard to have these homes built. Your hard work is helping us to have a brighter future and my daughter, and I thank you.”

Cllr Mattie Ross, Chair of SDC’s Housing Committee said:

“It was a pleasure to meet some of the new tenants when they moved into their new homes and hear what a difference they have made to their lives.

“I’m proud that we have delivered such energy efficient, high-quality homes that fit well with the local surroundings.”

The project supports one of the priorities in SDC’s Council Plan: to build affordable, energy efficient homes and supports the council’s commitment for the district to become carbon neutral by 2030.

Jamie Harwood, director of the Swindon division of Beard said:

“These properties mean so much to the local residents that now call them home.

“They are much more than bricks and mortar. These homes provide much needed housing for local residents. And thanks to the solar panels and air source heat pumps, they’ll also be more affordable to live in, and have less impact on the environment.”

The Summersfield Road houses are the first of three new-build sites Stroud District Council will be building this year, which will result in a total of 36 affordable homes in the district.

Stroud District Council is the only local authority in Gloucestershire which still owns and manages council houses, with the others having transferred them into other social housing organisations.

Work is almost complete on nine bungalows in Broadfield Road, Eastington, and 20 units on the site of a former sheltered housing scheme in Nailsworth which are scheduled to be completed in May.

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