WORK has started on a new housing development that will provide 80 affordable homes for people with strong local connections.

A large number of two, three and four-bedroom houses are being built at Loperwood Lane, Calmore, together with a small collection of one and two-bedroom flats.

Half the homes will be available to buy through the shared ownership scheme while the other 50% will be offered for rent.

The first proposal to redevelop the site was turned down by New Forest District Council in 2016 after sparking more than 100 objections.

People living in the Loperwood Lane area said the homes would generate too much traffic as well as adding to local flooding problems by covering the “Calmore sponge” with concrete.

But an appeal was lodged by the original applicant, London-based Howard Sharp and Partners, and a public inquiry was ordered into the scheme.

The council decided to offer no evidence after receiving new legal advice issued in the wake of the government’s pledge to tackle the nation’s housing shortage.

Following the inquiry the scheme was granted outline planning permission - and a more detailed proposal was approved in 2020.

The homes, which are being built on 4.4 hectares of agricultural land, will be managed by the Aster housing association.

Amanda Williams, group development director at Aster, said: “The site originally had outline permission for 80 homes, of which 50% had to be affordable.

"However, we wanted to deliver all the homes on an affordable basis.

“We provide a mixture of housing options to meet different needs and this site is no exception. It’s a fantastic opportunity for local people to get on to the property ladder in their own town at a price they can afford.”

The homes are being built by E G Carter & Co Ltd, which has worked in partnership with Wiltshire-based Aster since 2018.

Associate director Matthew Vyeer said: “The project is the partnership’s largest to date.

"The work completed behind the scenes to get to this stage has been a great advertisement for a collaborative working relationship with both Aster and the local authority.”


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