Landform Estates has sold its Bersted site which has outline planning consent for 225 new homes to BDW – a division of Barratt Homes – in a competitive tender which saw more than 32 interested parties.
The 15 hectare site (37 acre), known as Nursery Fields, is on the north-western edge of Bognor Regis and has outline permission for a mix of private, affordable and self-build homes. The new development also includes plans for public open spaces, communal sport and leisure facilities and a community orchard.
Although the site was allocated as part of the wider SD3 West of Bersted Strategic Housing Area, permission was initially refused by Arun District Council however, permission was granted on appeal by a Government Inspector in April this year. This consent follows an earlier enabling consent Landform obtained on the adjoining 2ha Chalcroft Nursery site that included a new access, commercial uses and 20 residential units.
Landform’s managing director, Erik Pagano said: “We are delighted with the sale of this prime site to BDW. The bidding process was highly competitive, with 32 expressions of interest and ten serious bids. Barratt put together a very competitive proposal and we chose them because we liked the professionalism of their team and had confidence in their ability to deliver.”
“There is a long-term under supply of housing in the Bognor/Chichester region, so we were not surprised by the level of interest. The housing market is still buoyant and there is also an acute shortage of land, particularly in the south-east due to various environmental constraints, such as nutrient neutrality.”
Mr Pagano added: “The timing of the exchange of contract was also perfect: just before the mini-budget when the financial markets were getting a little choppy.”
Julian Jones, development director of the Southampton division of Barratt David Wilson, said the purchase of the Bersted site enhances its already strong portfolio in the Arun district.
Mr Jones said: “This is an excellent site in a location where there is a short supply of consented good land for new homes. We are likely to take up the second site for 20 homes at Chalcroft Nursery as well.”
BDW is just finishing the last touches to its 800-home site at Felpham, which included a new relief road for Bognor Regis. The housebuilding has been finished but work is still taking place on the road and open spaces.
Other projects in the area include plans to apply soon for planning permission for a new 550-home site at Eastergate while an application has been submitted for a 130-home development at Walberton with a decision due by Christmas. Another application has recently been submitted for 200 new homes adjacent to Barnham Station.
BDW will now be applying to Arun District Council for a Reserved Matters Application for the Bersted development and hopes to start work on the site early next spring or summer.
Work on the site will also boost local employment. Mr Jones added: “Once we start the construction phase, we would expect to take on up to 120 tradespeople and apprentices to work on a site like this each day.”
The sales agent acting for Landform on the sale was Iain Halls of Frazer Halls.