Council steps up social housing delivery with two new schemes

Published: Monday, 7th January 2019

The City Council has submitted planning applications to deliver 35 new homes, half of which will be affordable and supported by funding from the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal, across two sites at Elsfield Hall and Cumberlege Close in the northern part of Oxford.

Forty per cent of the homes will be available for social rent to people on the City Council’s housing register.

At Cumberledge Close, the Council proposes to deliver a row of nine new family houses comprising two-bedroomed, three-bedroomed, and four-bedroomed units, as well as a total of 20 parking spaces. All nine units will be social rented homes.

The new development will retain the existing access from Mill Lane, and residents who currently access their rear garages from Cumberlege Close will still be able to do so in the future. 

The Cumberledge Close site is twinned with the Elsfield Hall site, and together the two schemes will provide 50 per cent homes for the open market and 50 per cent affordable homes.  

At the Elsfield Hall site, the Council is proposing to retain Elsfield Hall and build a new L-shaped block of three-storey flats comprising nine one-bed flats and  seventeen two-bed flats, with parking for residents and a shared rear courtyard garden. A new access to the residential development will be formed off Harefields.

The two developments will benefit from funding from the £215m Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal, which includes a £60 million fund to help deliver at least 1,320 additional affordable homes across the county. The sites would not deliver planning policy compliant levels of affordable housing without the Growth Deal funds.

The Council’s wholly-owned company, Oxford City Housing Limited (OCHL), plans to provide 530 affordable homes between the current financial year and 2022/23, starting with 211 over the next two years. 

The Elsfield Hall and Cumberledge Close schemes are part of the current and planned developments, which include Barton Park, Oxford North, Oxpens, Blackbird Leys, Between Towns Road, Lucy Faithful House site, and Littlemore Park, among others.

Councillor Mike Rowley, Board Member for Housing, said: “I’m pleased that the two sites have had planning applications submitted and we can now move forward with plans to develop them and deliver much-needed housing for the people of Oxford, including homes for social rent. The sites will be developed by the Council’s wholly-owned housing company, Oxford City Housing Limited.”