Wychavon District Council
The site comprises a 8.18 acre agricultural field located on the eastern edge of the village of Honeybourne, close to a range of local facilities including the village’s train station.
Rosconn Strategic Land were selected by the Trustees and their agent Tayler & Fletcher as development partner in view of our local knowledge and proven track record in delivering high quality, sustainable developments that leave a positive legacy. A further key factor was the fact the village had initiated the preparation of a Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP) and Rosconn were able to demonstrate their vast experience in successfully promoting sites through this process.
Rosconn’s proven track record for working with landowners in a trusted, transparent and innovative way that enables maximisation of land value was also a key consideration for the owners in selecting the most appropriate land promotion partner. Having entered into a Promotion Agreement with the landowners in Spring 2018, Rosconn immediately engaged with the NDP Group to demonstrate the suitability of the site to help meet the specific housing needs of the local community. An open and on-going dialogue with the local community representatives ensued, supplemented with an iterative approach to the Concept Design to ensure the emerging scheme met local aspirations, backed up by a comprehensive evidence base.
The early engagement with the NDP Group helped establish a positive working relationship and when the various potential sites were presented to the local community, the site was by far the most popular and subsequently selected as the preferred site when the Draft NDP was published in March 2019. Notwithstanding the site’s draft allocation, the Draft NDP sought to restrict the scale of development and prevent its delivery until 2024. Whilst it was therefore necessary to formally object to the plan, the planning justification was carefully explained to maintain the site’s status in the emerging plan. Whilst the NDP Group ultimately retained their approach in the final draft NDP when it was submitted to Wychavon District Council (WDC), the subsequent independent Examiner agreed with Rosconn, recognising the site’s capacity to accommodate a higher level of development and that there were no justifiable reason to delay its delivery.
The Honeybourne NDP, as amended by the Examiner, was subsequently subject to referendum and formally made in April 2020, allowing an Outline Planning Application for up to 65 dwellings (including 40% Affordable) to be submitted in June 2020. Whilst issues regarding highways and drainage were raised during the determination period, these were quickly resolved by Rosconn’s experienced technical consultants, enabling the application to be reported to Planning Committee in October where a resolution to grant permission, subject to the completion of a S106 Agreement, was secured. This was progressed rapidly to enable planning permission to be finally issued in December 2020.
Rosconn had agreed with the landowners’ agent to commence the marketing process while waiting for the planning process to conclude. A very detailed tender pack was prepared by our internal technical team with input from external consultants. The in-depth nature of the information provided enabled a highly competitive tendering process. Rosconn’s approach massively de-risks technical issues that housebuilders assess in a cautious manner. We pride ourselves on this, as it’s one of our key promises at the start of the journey with landowners.
The tendering process resulted in ten offers being put forward by a selection of PLC housebuilders but just as importantly some Small Medium Enterprise (SME) housebuilders as well. One of these SME builders, Owl Homes, was on a growth drive and put forward the most competitive terms. The legal process for the sale ran in tandem with the final stages of the planning process which enabled the unconditional exchange of sale contracts to actualise four days after the planning decision notice had been received.
It’s fair to say that our customers were delighted with the maximized return they received.