Newland buys factory site as new housing scheme looms

The factory site bought by Newland Homes looks set to be converted into housing.

The factory site bought by Newland Homes looks set to be converted into housing. - Credit: n/a

A property developer has snapped up a factory site in Claverham – just days before villagers vote on how they want to see the area evolve over the next decade.

UTC Aerospace Systems, off Bishops Road, has been sold to Newland Homes.

The future of the 14.22-acre site has been uncertain ever since UTC announced job losses in 2014 and the factory was put on the market last year.

The amount paid for it by Newland has not been disclosed.

Claverham Future – which has been working on draft neighbourhood plan proposals for three years – believes the site is the most suitable area for housing the village has.

Simon Richardson, associate land director at Newland Homes, said: “Securing this brownfield site in Claverham is another milestone in the growth of Newland Homes.

“We look forward to working with North Somerset Council and Claverham Futures in bringing forward plans for the redeveloping this site.”

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The site extends beyond the blueprint of the factory and encompasses the land where the village hall stands and adjoining field.

An attempt to get the field registered as a village green by the council however failed in 2016. Such an order would have given it extra protection from development.

Newland is working on housing plans and says it will submit a planning application later this year.

James Petherick, director in residential development at JLL in Bristol which conducted the sale, said: “This is an excellent redevelopment opportunity that will provide homes on a sustainable brownfield site, easing the pressure on North Somerset’s existing housing provision.

“There was significant interest in the site from the development market.

“Opportunities such as this one are highly sought after; indeed, many of the parties who were interested in this site are still on the hunt for similar opportunities.”

People in Claverham will go to the polls on Thursday to vote on whether to adopt the neighbourhood plan.

Claverham Future chairman Nigel Cooper has urged villagers to give up five minutes of their time to vote in the referendum.