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Urban & Civic takes over Corby housing development

23 Oct 17 Developer Urban & Civic has taken over the freehold of a large housing development site in Corby after the previous owner fell into administration.

More than 5,000 new homes are being built at Priors Hall in Corby, with several different house-builders on site. Work has been continuing as normal despite the appointment of administrators to the development company in October 2016. Now Urban & Civic has stepped in as master developer, paying £39.9m for the freehold land at Priors Hall.

The existing consented land extends to 907 acres in two local authority areas, Corby Borough and East Northamptonshire District.  Separately, Urban & Civic has also acquired a further 58 acres of adjacent woodland for an additional £550,000 to take the total invested to £40.5m.

Priors Hall has an existing outline planning consent for 5,095 units, some of which has been sold to seven different housebuilders and is in the process of being built out.  The development is split into three residential phases with the new homes set within lakes, open parkland and forests.   Urban & Civic has bought 3,656 uncontracted plots, comprising phases 2 and 3. It will also get £11.8m of payments outstanding from phase 1, giving a net purchase consideration of £28.1m for the uncontracted plots.

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The development already has more than 1,000 residents, and house-builders on site include Barratt and David Wilson, Taylor Wimpey, Kier and Francis Jackson Homes.  There were close to 200 housing completions at Priors Hall in the 12 months to March 2017.  Priors Hall Primary School for 420 children had its first intake in September 2016. 

The purchase of Priors Hall is being part funded by the Homes & Communities Agency, which is also making available additional facilities to cover future forecast infrastructure spend. 

Urban & Civic chief executive Nigel Hugill said: "Priors Hall offers exceptional upside for shareholders and demonstrates the ability of Urban & Civic to work through large site challenges that other developers often find too daunting. The acquisition is right in our sweet spot: complicated history, long and supportive funding structure, demonstrable potential for better project organisation and improved planning.”

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