New Wortley Community Association (NWCA) has been successful in securing a grant to develop an exciting community-led housing project in West Leeds.
As reported earlier this week, NWCA has gained funding to build up to 12 new affordable homes on the site of the former Wellington stores shop in Holdforth Place, New Wortley. The store, which acted as a magnet for anti-social behaviour, was demolished earlier this year.
More details are emerging about the proposals. Here are seven things you need to know about the scheme:
1. New housing will be affordable – and there may be more
The housing would be owned by NWCA and rented out as affordable housing. If the initial scheme is successful the charity has ambitions to provide more housing locally.
Community Leader Bill Graham said:
“We’re now turning our focus to community-led housing. We want to build housing that is affordable to rent and that is designed to enhance and improve the area around the Holdforths and Clydes estate.”
Councillor Richard Lewis, Leeds City Council’s executive member for regeneration, transport and planning, added:
“It is absolutely vital that as a city we ensure every possible opportunity to build more affordable housing in Leeds is explored. Community-led housing delivery is very much a key element of assisting to meet this need.”
2. All change for site
The store has a chequered history and was closed last summer after a group of up to 30 people had been involved in disorder around the shop which saw police officers and their vehicles pelted with bricks and bottles.
3. £75,000 grant
Power to Change – a national fund keen to promote community businesses in England – has agreed a grant of £75,000 to bring these plans for up to a dozen new housing units to the table, providing resources for consultation, business planning, legal work, surveys and outline plans. This investment is part of work at Power to Change to help local communities improve the quantity and quality of housing across England.
Work on the proposals has already started, and the aim is to have plans in front of councillors for approval during first half of 2018.
5. Who’s doing this?
A project team has been assembled including The Project Office (architects associated with Leeds Beckett University) COGS (community consultation specialists,) Hodsons Architects, BWA (cost consultants) Goodwin Trust in Hull, and Leeds Community Homes.
6. NWCA attracts £2 million to New Wortley
This local charity has major ambitions to improve the quality of life of residents of New Wortley. In recent years it has attracted over £2million pounds of direct investment into New Wortley, creating 20 jobs for local people and seeing 36 volunteers go into work (in the last 18 months).
7. New Wortley Community Centre
NWCA has also launched an award-winning new community centre and works with local residents and ex-offenders in projects described as innovative, highly effective and life changing.