Bernicia welcomes council approval for £13m Berwick new homes scheme

Bernicia has welcomed Northumberland County Council’s go-ahead for 58 affordable new homes to be built in Berwick.

Bernicia’s £13m scheme will see a mix of bungalows and family homes built on the site of the former Seton Hall at Tweedmouth specifically to meet local need.

The houses for affordable rent or shared ownership are aimed at local people – for young people starting out on the housing ladder, couples, young families, and older people looking to downsize their existing home.

Included in Bernicia’s plans are 11 two and three bedroom bungalows as well as a mix of two, three and four-bedroom properties on the site of nearly two hectares of disused land, once the home of the now demolished Seton Hall.

Work is due to start on site during Autumn 2023, and will take two years to complete.

Rents for the properties will all be affordable – that means they will be at least 20% cheaper than private market rents in the area, and these will also reflect Bernicia’s own affordability assessments that ensure homes are affordable for local people. The proposed shared ownership properties will allow people to part buy and part rent their new home, with the option of buying bigger shares when they can afford to.

All the properties will be highly energy efficient.

Michael Farr, Bernicia Executive Director of Assets and Growth, said: “It’s great news that Northumberland County Council has backed our plans to deliver 58 quality new homes in Berwick, where we know there is a very strong demand for affordable housing.

“Bernicia has a proven track record of building quality new homes in North Northumberland for rent, including at our recent development at Seahouses, and across the wider North East.

“As a social housing provider, we will provide a mix of affordable rented and shared ownership properties in a newly landscaped area people will be proud to call home.”

Glen Sanderson, Leader of Northumberland County Council, welcomed the decision.

He said: “This is an excellent example of a social housing provider working with us on design and funding to deliver new affordable homes for our residents.

“I will be looking for other opportunities to use this collaborative approach in other parts of the county.”

Bernicia is committed to investing £90m into building at least 600 new homes over the next three years as part of its £210m corporate strategy.

Image is CGI of the planned Seton Hall development.