Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Redevelopment to fund more social housing

A DEAL has been reached on the future of a social housing complex in Shiplake.

A DEAL has been reached on the future of a social housing complex in Shiplake.

South Oxfordshire Housing Association plans to turn the Sidney Harrison House estate, off Mill Road, into 12 “affordable housing units” on half the land and develop the other half privately.

Currently the site has 18 tenancies with 14 in a block of flats and four in bungalows.

Soha plans to re-invest the income from the private housing in affordable housing.

Spokeswoman Liz Roberts said: “Sidney Harrison House was considered for redevelopment as it was composed of bedsit accommodation. This had proved an increasingly unpopular housing option for older residents.



“The possibilities for redevelopment were evaluated over several months and a proposal put to residents and their representatives for consultation.”

It was announced in October last year that the site would close and all tenants would be moved out. Soha hosted public meetings with residents, all of whom are 50-plus, and has now guaranteed all services will remain in place until all residents have a new home.

There was also consultation with Shiplake Parish Council and South Oxfordshire District Council.

Ms Roberts said: “Both are content with Soha’s intention to redevelop the site to create a 12 unit affordable sheltered housing scheme on half of it and some private houses on the other.

“Residents were initially and understandably unsettled but all have moved, helped by loss-of-home compensation, a sum fixed by statute. Most have remained in Soha properties, all of them better quality than the bedsits they moved from. Those who have not stayed with Soha have typically used this opportunity to move away altogether, for example to be nearer family.

“Soha will eventually ask for a pre-planning application meeting and is in the meantime carrying out site investigations and due diligence enquiries.”



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