Tuesday, January 13, 2015

News: Harworth's first sale at Prince of Wales development

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Harworth Estates, the company created to realise the property assets of what was UK Coal, has completed its first residential land sale at the 77-acre Prince of Wales development in Pontefract to Ben Bailey Homes.

Based at its own £100m Waverley development in Rotherham, Harworth Estates manages around 31,370 acres across some 200 projects, with consent for 8,000 new homes. By regenerating former coalfields and brownfield land the AIM-listed firm valued its investment properties in June 2014 at £283.7m, up from £278.5m in the previous year.

The 31 hectare former Prince of Wales colliery site, adjoining the M62 at Junction 32 in West Yorkshire, was producing 1.5 million tonnes of coal a year until 2002. Harworth secured outline planning consent in December 2013 for 917 homes and 265,000 sq ft of employment space, as well as a range of community facilities, including retail units, caf├ęs and medical & community centres. Completion of the entire development is expected to take between eight and ten years.

The first transaction, for an 11 acre parcel of land, will enable Ben Bailey Homes to build 131 three and four-bedroom homes on the site of the pit yard. Construction of the first homes is expected to begin in January, which should allow the first residents to move in by the Autumn of this year.

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The land sale follows a significant amount of work undertaken by Harworth to prepare the 77-acre site for development, including the removal of all colliery buildings and mining infrastructure and the installation of new highways and drainage infrastructure. The sites development also includes the former spoil heap, next to the pit yard, which will be transformed into a country park which will combine with Pontefract Park and Pontefract Racecourse.

Chris Davidson, development manager for Harworth Estates, said: "This is an important first transaction in the regeneration of the former colliery, demonstrating our ability to create homes on brownfield land. Ben Bailey Homes is a high-quality housebuilder, with whom we have built up a strong relationship.

Mark Mitchell, managing director at Ben Bailey Homes, added: "The purchase of land at the former Prince of Wales colliery represents a significant investment for Ben Bailey Homes. This £28m development of 131 new homes will be the very first for us in Pontefract and forms part of the businesses ongoing strategy for a major roll out of new developments across Yorkshire in 2015."

So far, housebuilding at Waverley has been undertaken successfully by Harron Homes, Taylor Wimpey and Barratt, with more than 250 houses built and occupied over the past two years.

Harworth Estates

Images: Harworth Estates

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