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Demand for riverside homes at Barnstaple’s Anchorwood Bank

PUBLISHED: 10:50 16 December 2015

An aerial view of the new houses from the Long Bridge

An aerial view of the new houses from the Long Bridge

Archant

Calls to enquire about homes coming in ‘on a daily basis’ as development moves on at a lightning pace

A view of the western piazza from the 'central park' area A view of the western piazza from the 'central park' area

Developers say people are calling ‘on a daily basis’ to enquire about new riverside homes being built at Barnstaple’s Anchorwood Bank.

Plans for 172 homes – part of one of North Devon’s biggest regeneration projects in living memory – were only submitted last week.

But Stephen Snooks, North Devon Homes’ regeneration project manager, said there was already huge interest in the development.

“We’ve had a lot of support for what we’re doing here and we’re already getting calls on a daily basis to enquire about the houses.

“I think some people are quite disappointed when we tell them they won’t be available until the end of 2017.”

Affordable homes

Of the 172 homes, 37 will be ‘affordable’ but Mr Snooks said the vision was to make Anchorwood a ‘haven’ in Barnstaple.

“It’s one of the most important sites in North Devon and something has needed to be done here for a long time,” he added.

“It will be a real haven in the town. It’s the biggest thing we’ll be doing up to 2020 and then we hope to use that experience on other sites in the future.”

North Devon Homes had originally planned to build up to 350 houses on the site, but this was revised down to offer ‘something of great value to the area’.

Retail and restaurants

Plans for the retail and restaurant area were submitted earlier this month.

The first houses, along with access roads and a large central park area, should be completed in September 2017, which will be marketed as early as the new year.

Asda is expected to move onto the site in April.

Flood defence

Progress on the site continues at lightning pace – flood defence works along the river are almost complete, and have been engineered to withstand a ‘once in 100 years event’.

Work has also been ongoing on the main access road to the site, which, along with a roundabout within, is nearing completion.

That should be finished by February after a slight delay caused by a water main, said site manager Gavin Evans.

“We were lucky we got the first lot of earth works done when we had good weather,” he said.

“We’re hoping for drier weather in January and February for moving the earth again as the materials don’t take water very well.

“Asda is supposed to be starting on-site in April, but that’s not been confirmed yet. But we’ll be done by then.”

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