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Work begins on 178 new eco-friendly homes on former Wolverhampton school site

Building work has begun on a new 178-home housing estate on the site of a former Wolverhampton school.

An artist's impression of how the proposed homes on the former Northicote School in Bushbury, Wolverhampton could look like. PIC: Accord Housing
An artist's impression of how the proposed homes on the former Northicote School in Bushbury, Wolverhampton could look like. PIC: Accord Housing

WV Living, the city council’s housing management company, has started construction on land previously occupied by Northicote School in Northwood Park Road, Bushbury.

The development, which will include 29 affordable rent and 16 shared ownership homes, will be called Hampton Park – named after former Northicote headteacher Sir Geoff Hampton. It will consist of a mixture of one, two, three and four-bedroom houses.

Building work on the eco-friendly homes is being carried out by GreenSquareAccord – with Sir Geoff invited to put the first spade in the ground this week to mark the start of the project.

Councillor Bhupinder Gakhal (Lab. Wednesfield South), cabinet member for city assets and housing, said: “I am delighted that we have reached this significant milestone at Hampton Park and see another WV Living project get underway.

“The designs that have been created will provide top quality, low-carbon homes for the city and developments with strong local links which residents can be proud of.

“WV Living continues to support the city’s overall house building programme and deliver much-needed new homes people will love.”

All the properties will be built using pre-fabricated, insulated and fully-clad timber panels from GreenSquareAccord’s manufacturing facility, LoCaL Homes in Walsall. The off-site construction means the properties will be built quicker and with less waste compared to other traditional builds.

The project will also create 28 new apprenticeships across all of the trades involved.

WV Living managing director Sally Saunders added: “We are delighted to be delivering sustainable homes in this part of Wolverhampton to meet much-needed demand. Our developments enhance and create communities, with good road and transport links to support people to live and work in the city.”

Northicote School, which closed in 2014 and was demolished in 2018, was built to serve both secondary modern and grammar streams in the expanding Bushbury area during the 1950s.

It was the first school in Britain to be condemned as ‘failing’ by Ofsted shortly after the organisation’s creation in 1992. But within five years it had been transformed into a “successful and over-subscribed school” under the leadership of Mr Hampton.

Following the turnaround, he received a knighthood for services to education before departing to take up a professor’s role at the University of Wolverhampton.

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