Turning of the turf ceremonies have taken place to mark the start of work on new homes for older people in Lincolnshire.
LACE Housing held the events at Lindum Construction sites in Lincoln Road, Ingham and Deepdale Lane, Nettleham.
Lindum is building 12 apartments in Ingham, costing £1.6m, and a larger £4.8m development of 22 apartments and 14 bungalows in Nettleham.
The new homes, designed for those aged 55 and over, are being developed in partnership with West Lindsey District Council (WLDC), Thornton-Firkin LLP, Saunders Boston and HWD Architects.
Councillor Owen Bierley, Deputy Leader of WLDC, said: “We all know that access to good-quality housing is the foundation upon which people can build happy and successful lives and communities.
“Therefore, we are especially pleased to be working in partnership with LACE Housing. These two schemes will deliver much-needed quality affordable housing for our ageing population.”
LACE Housing is a charitable organisation and the developments have been made possible thanks to a £3.7m grant from the government’s Homes England as part of the Shared Ownership and Affordable Homes programme.
They are part of a wider programme of 82 new homes being developed by LACE Housing in Lincolnshire in 2018; work began on a third development in Washingborough earlier this year.
LACE Housing schemes are designed to enable older people to remain within their communities and maintain links with their friends and family while enjoying quality facilities and services.
Simon Gregory, Managing Director of Lindum Construction, said: “We’re delighted to be working with LACE Housing again. It’s brilliant to be able to deliver housing like this in the wonderful county of Lincolnshire.
“The design of these homes is so important because houses that suit families have different priorities to those specially built for the over 55s. Our design team has worked tirelessly on providing suitable and attractive accommodation and I have to thank them for their dedication.”
Representatives from all partners were present at the turf cutting ceremonies, including John Evans from Nettleham Parish Council.
He said: “This occasion marks a major milestone in the journey to provide accommodation for older people, which we first highlighted around 12 years ago after consultation with the public.
“People love living in the village and 25 per cent of the population have lived here for more than 30 years, which is a staggeringly low turnover.
“The total number of local residents over 60 is more than twice the national average and we’re finding that people want to stay here and remain with their friends and within their community.
“By providing housing like this within our village, we hope that many more people will continue to enjoy living in this beautiful part of Lincolnshire for many years to come.”
LACE Housing’s Chief Executive Nick Chambers said: “After months of planning, it’s a great feeling to have got to this stage. Having worked with Lindum Construction on a number of projects, we are confident in their ability to meet our high standards as a provider of quality housing.
“For these developments, we have also been in contact with schools in the areas to identify opportunities to involve younger generations in our work.
“Pupils at Nettleham Infant School, Ingham Primary School and Nettleham Church of England Junior School have been invited to come up with names for our new schemes and we can’t wait to hear their suggestions.”
The new homes will be available in 2019 to either rent or buy through a shared ownership scheme. This work is just part of the Government’s commitment to build 300,000 new homes per year by the middle of the next decade.