Hundreds of new homes set for Bestwood

Nottingham City Council.
Nottingham City Council.

Hundreds of new homes are to be built on the site of an old school in the Bestwood Estate, and its nearby playing field.

Nottingham City Council has now agreed to appoint a housing developer to build 350 houses, 93 of which will be new council houses, owned by the council and operated by Nottingham City Homes. 

Exact details of what the houses will look like have not yet been agreed, and a full planning application is expected at a later date.

The school itself closed in 2000, and its detached playing field on Ridgeway, is also included in the development. 

The annex building of the adjacent Henry Whipple School will also be included in the plot.

The council says the annex has not been used as a school for more than a decade.

It was partially refurbished as office accommodation, but is due to be vacated by the end of this month

The council has agreed to sell part of both sites. The cost involved was not disclosed, on the grounds of commercial sensitivity.

It will retain the ownership of the land on which the council houses will be built, but the developer will be responsible for building these.

Part of the funding to build the new council houses will come from receipts from tenants who have used the right-to-buy scheme to purchase their council house. 

The council did consider using the whole of both sites for council housing.

However this plan was rejected, in order to provide ‘the best mix and balance of tenure choice for local people’.

Councillor Linda Woodings, council head of housing, said: “This is a key decision we’re taking to effectively procure a developer to build 350 new homes on two sites in Bestwood, Padstow and Ridgeway sites.

“Padstow is much the larger site, where we estimate at least 300 homes can be built.

“This does help us actually use up our right-to-buy replacement funds, where we have massive restrictions.

“We have to spend them within three-and-a-quarter years, and if we don’t spend them in that time we have to send them back to the Government with a punitive rate of interest. 

“We don’t want to do that, so this will effectively help us spend that.

“It’s a good news story for housing in Bestwood.

“In addition to these sites, the Beckhampton site is we hope going to be 100 per cent council houses, the Eastglade site is going to be 100 percent council houses and we’re currently looking to increase the number of homes we’re building there, and then we’ve got the former Haywood School playing field as well.

“On all these sites we are retaining open space, it won’t all be houses.

“This is all going to fulfilling our promise of building or buying 1,000 new social homes for Nottingham citizens to rent.”