Work starts on new £4.2m housing project in Norfolk village

Andrew Savage of Broadland Housing association (holding spade, left) and Philip Cowen of Breckland Council.

Andrew Savage of Broadland Housing association (holding spade, left) and Philip Cowen of Breckland Council (holding spade, right), with (back row, from left) David Childerhouse, Ben Campbell and Tom Bennet of Great Hockham Parish Council, and Michael Newey, chief executive of Broadland Housing. - Credit: Newman Associates PR

The first sod was dug up at the site of a £4.2 million housing project in Great Hockham to mark the start of work on 'much-needed' new homes in the village.

Work has started on 18 new family homes on a site at Wretham Road, which will include eight homes for affordable rent, two for shared ownership, and eight new open market homes.

The £4.2 million project, which is due to be completed by February 2023, will see homes for affordable rent prioritised for people with a connection to Great Hockham or the surrounding parishes.

Michael Newey, chief executive of Broadland Housing, said: “We are meeting a genuine need for housing in rural village communities, which will enable local people to find homes in those communities and thus stay close to their support networks and make places such as Great Hockham more sustainable.

“This kind of mixed tenure development, with a blend of affordable homes and open-market homes, is increasingly the way forward, both because it makes such schemes financially viable, but also because it encourages a better integration within the community.”

Andrew Savage, executive development director at Broadland Housing Association, joined Philip Cowen of Breckland Council at the site to dig the first sod, alongside members from Great Hockham Parish Council.

Mr Cowen said “Rural communities in Breckland desperately need new housing. 

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“Our own housing needs survey showed that providing new home, including affordable homes, in Great Hockham will help the village become a community hub for the surrounding villages.  

"This is an ‘exceptions site’ outside the current village boundaries, and as such the affordable homes will be prioritised for those with a local connection, which is important.

“The way Broadland Housing has brought this project forward has been refreshing.  

"They brought a real level of expertise in building local communities, they communicated and listened to local people, and they have been great to work with.”

The homes have been designed by architects Ingleton Wood, and are being constructed by contractor Smith of Honingham.

Managing director Jonathan Smith said: “We are delighted to once again be Broadland’s partners in bringing to life these new homes”