Secretary of State officially opens six affordable village homes at Abbess Roding, Essex

26 May 2011
Celebrating the Opening of Bass Cottages, Abbess Roding
The MP for Brentwood and Ongar, the Rt Hon Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government opened a development of six affordable village homes in Abbess Roding last week (20 May 2011). Following the opening ceremony, invited guests were able to view inside the homes.

Developed by Hastoe Housing Association, the homes have been provided on land made available by a local farmer. Under planning rules, priority for these affordable homes will always be given to local people. The scheme comprises four homes for rent and two for shared ownership.

Ulrike Maccariello, Development Manager at Hastoe said: “Abbess, Beauchamp & Berners Roding Parish Council take much of the credit for this scheme. It was they who recognised the impact the lack of affordable housing was having on the community. The support of Epping Forest District Council and the Homes and Communities Agency together with the generosity of the landowner has meant that we have been able make this scheme happen and help with the sustainability of the village.”

Cllr Bruce Stratton, Chairman, Abbess, Beauchamp and Berners Roding Parish Council said: “The Abbess Beauchamp & Berners Roding Parish Council is delighted to be celebrating the addition of six homes to our community, which allows local people the opportunity to rent or purchase an affordable home. We are pleased with the design and it goes to show that a sensitive development can complement the existing houses in the parish.”

Cllr Maggie McEwen, Epping Forest District Council's newly-appointed Housing Portfolio Holder and the Ward Member for Abbess Roding said: "Thanks to the District Council's pragmatic planning exceptions policy, which allows desperately needed affordable homes to be provided in rural areas on land that cannot normally be developed, six households from Abbess Roding and the surrounding villages are now able to stay in their local area. All the parties involved have been working hard to bring this scheme to fruition, so I am delighted to finally see it opened."

The homes have been built to a sustainability rating of Code Level 4 and include environmental features such as ground source heat pumps.

The scheme cost £832,000 with funding of £250,000 coming from the Homes and Communities Agency.
Robert Moore, Area Manager for the Homes and Communities Agency said: “Accessibility to affordable homes in village locations is really important for community cohesion. This is an excellent example of how government money and partnership working at a local level can help deliver what local people really need.”

The event was kindly sponsored by contractor Duncan Cameron & Hutchinson Ltd and, the employer’s agent Davis Langdon. The development was designed by architects RH Partnerships and David Webber Partnership.


For more information please contact: Rebecca Beaumont on 020 8973 0437 or

Notes to Editors

• The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) is the single, national housing and regeneration delivery agency for England. Our vision is to create opportunity for people to live in homes they can afford in places they want to live, by enabling local authorities and communities to deliver the ambition they have for their own areas.
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