First tenants move into fair value rent homes in Woodnook, Accrington

  |     |   WOODNOOK

First residents move into £15m regeneration scheme.


Kristoff and Magda Grabowska are the first tenants to move into a newly refurbished family home in Woodnook, Accrington.

The couple, who hail from Poland and have lived in Accrington for over five years, moved into a property on Nuttall Street on a six-month assured shorthold tenancy (AST) agreement.

They are the first family to occupy what will be 131 family homes being created by PlaceFirst and joint venture partner Together Housing Group by transforming dilapidated empty terraced properties into energy efficient two, three and four-bed family homes for fair value private rent.

Mr and Mrs Grabowska, who have three children, chose the property because the interior of their new home was brand new and more spacious than their previous home, and were attracted to Woodnook because of the regeneration of the neighbourhood and it’s convenient location.

The couple and their children were welcomed into their new home by Yvonne Hinds, Neighbourhood Coordinator for Woodnook, and Rachael Bryenton, Leasehold Officer at Together Housing Group. In addition to taking possession of their new home, Kristoff & Magda were presented with a welcome hamper to the value of £50.

Ten properties around Woodnook have now been fully refurbished, including one, two, and three bedroom homes. Four properties are already let with market strong interest on the remaining 6. Discover Property Management, a local Accrington business are working with PlaceFirst and Together Housing Group on a marketing strategy for the homes.

The next release of homes is due to occur in February 2015, and includes a mix of brand new two, three, and four bedroom homes built within the shell of traditional Victorian terraces.

More than 150 registrations of interest to date and a number of application forms submitted for the next release in February.

In addition to the new homes, PlaceFirst is delivering a property facelift project on Nuttall Street, Woodnook which will create an attractive gateway into the area and help support local shops and businesses.

Hyndburn Borough Council has approved further facelift projects in Woodnook and anticipate delivery in 2015.

Public realm improvements to a number of streets will also be delivered, and there are plans for a new public square in the heart of Woodnook, adjacent to The Woodnook Centre and in close proximity to local shops.

Martin Ellerby, Head of New Business & Innovation at Manchester-based PlaceFirst, said: “This is a landmark moment for PlaceFirst and Together Housing Group as we welcome our first customers to Woodnook. Over the next 12 months or so we will see continued regeneration right across this community and the future is looking bright for 2015. We wish Kristoff, Magda and their young family many happy times in their new home.

We believe that the homes we are building set a new benchmark in fair value private rent. Along with our joint venture partners at Together Housing Group, we are not only delivering great homes, but a professional, courteous landlord service for our customers.

“The scale of what we’re doing in Woodnook is transformational and we’re very grateful for the continued support of Hyndburn Borough Council.”

Kevin Ruth, Together Housing Group Deputy Chief Executive, added: “We’re delighted to see the first tenants move into this new development and we hope they’re very happy in their new home.

“This development is as much about people as it is about the regeneration of the area. We hope Kristoff, Magda and their children enjoy their first Christmas in their new home.”

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