Plans for 158 affordable homes at Houlton, Rugby

Partnership between Countryside and Midland Heart will see 158 new homes built as part of the new Houlton community.

9th Dec 2020 - Developments
By  Sarah O'Leary

Residents in Rugby are set to benefit from the ongoing transformation of the former Rugby Radio Station site on the eastern edge of the town, with plans for 158 affordable homes now underway. The development forms part of the urban extension being brought forward by Urban&Civic in partnership with Aviva Investors.

We're working in partnership with Countryside, the UK’s leading mixed-tenure developer, and are set to introduce new, high quality social housing to the thriving Houlton community. Homes England has provided the grant funding to build these much needed homes as well funding for the infrastructure at Mast Site. 

Our collaboration forms part of an agreement with Countryside to build 1,000 affordable homes across the Midlands over three years.

Gary Belcher, Managing Director, Partnerships South Midlands, Countryside, commented: “This latest scheme in Houlton represents an important milestone for Countryside. It’s an achievement that reflects the significant growth we have experienced since arriving in the Midlands in 2018 and we’re looking forward to starting on site to contribute to the ongoing regeneration of this historic site in Rugby.

“We’d like to thank our colleagues at Midland Heart for sharing our ambition to provide high quality living environments for their tenants efficiently. It’s more important than ever that we celebrate the positive impact these properties will have on local communities and the difference that new homes will make to the lives of many families. We are very proud of the work that we have achieved in partnership and look forward to continuing Midland Heart’s aim to deliver much-needed affordable housing for those who need it most.”

In current times, people feeling they are part of a community has never been more important, so we’re extremely pleased to be able to deliver even more high quality and affordable homes in the Houlton area. These homes will be great news for local people looking for a new home at a cost they can afford.

Chris Miller, Director of Development at Midland Heart

Caroline Cormack, Head of Provider Management at Homes England said: “Despite the current challenges affecting the country, accelerating housebuilding remains our number one priority. We are committed to supporting Midland Heart that have ambitions to build new homes and our investment through affordable housing grant allows us to do that. We’re delighted that this funding will enable Midland Heart to deliver much needed new homes in Rugby.”

Countryside is harnessing Modern Methods of Construction to facilitate a swift delivery of the new homes and ensure residents can be settled into the new community as quickly as possible. 

Mike van den Berg, Senior Development Manager at Urban&Civic said: “We know through working closely with Rugby Borough Council and local communities, that affordable homes are an important part of the housing mix at Houlton, and we are delighted to be welcoming Countryside and Midland Heart to our site.”

The historic site was once the hub of the UK’s telecommunications network, boasting the world’s largest radio transmission station. In 1927, Rugby Radio Station made the first ever transatlantic telephone call to America - to a town called Houlton in Maine.

Once home to 12 towering radio masts which dominated Rugby’s skyline for over 80 years, the site was demolished in 2007 before work began in 2016 to create a new community called Houlton, comprising over 6,000 homes, schools, open space, sports pitches, a district centre, new link road and businesses over a 1,200-acre development site. 

Work to develop Houlton has been underway since 2016 with nearly 400 new homes now occupied along with a raft of early infrastructure including a primary school, a secondary school under construction, a café, community centre, play area and significant formal and informal green spaces.