Devon Rural Housing Awards for Best Rural Development
The Devon Rural Housing Partnership’s annual Best Rural Development Awards will be presented at Thorverton Village Hall on Friday 16th November.
These awards are given to the best rural developments completed in Devon in the last financial year. The judges take the standard of design, consideration for the local vernacular and engagement with the local community into account.
This year’s winners are LiveWest for their development at Court Barton Close, Thorverton.
The judges found this development to be attractive with a great sense of space. The affordable homes were well integrated into the scheme and the build quality was extremely high. The homes incorporate energy saving elements which means they have very low energy bills and are highly sustainable. The judges also felt that the development blended in extremely well with the local architecture and nearby buildings enabling it to fit seamlessly into the village.
LiveWest’s head of development, Nathan Cronk, said: “The team at LiveWest is delighted that we, in partnership with Westhaven Homes, have been recognised for this award. Our development at Thorverton has helped us to provide local people with the opportunity to remain in this sought after village which they would otherwise be priced out of.
The homes have been beautifully built by Westhaven with an interesting mix of materials and a range of property types - including bungalows
“It is unusual to get the opportunity to build new homes in villages such as Thorverton and our customers are really pleased with their new homes - this award recognises a very successful project for everyone involved.”
The runner-up award will be presented to Cornerstone Housing and Rentplus for their development at Meadow Haze, Woodbury.
The judges were impressed by the way that the development blended in with nearby traditional properties and had a number of well thought out environmental features inside and outside of the properties for maximum sustainability.
Another interesting feature is the use of the Rent to Buy tenure and this development is the first of its kind in East Devon. The Rentplus Rent to Buy model sees tenants pay a low, below market rent for their home and receive a 10% gifted deposit towards the deposit on their home when they are ready to buy it after a set period.
Cornerstone Housing Limited, the managing agent for Rentplus at Meadow Haze, targeted local people for this scheme to help them work sustainably toward homeownership.
Anne Seaborne, Development Manager of Cornerstone Housing, said “Cornerstone is delighted to have been involved in delivering new, high quality, affordable housing in the Parish of Woodbury”.
Richard Connolly, Head of Strategic Projects at Rentplus said “We’re thrilled to be shortlisted for this award and to have the Rentplus Rent|Save|Own ethos recognised as making a difference for local people. Working with Cornerstone, and other housing associations around the country, means we can make a real difference to families and enable them to move away from high rents into affordable rent to buy homes.”
This year’s awards were sponsored by Teign Housing, Aster Group, Hastoe Housing Association, Southwestern Housing Association and Westward Housing Group.