Details revealed of 'prime development' of allotment land in Crowland
A development scheme in Crowland to turn allotment land into new housing has been called "an imaginative project for a prime site".
Crowland Parish Council is working with Holbeach developers Seagate Homes to transform nearly 11 acres of land off James Road, Crowland, into both affordable and "open market" housing.
The scheme, called the Abbey Farm development, would allow up to 45 homes to be built, including affordable ones and chalet bungalows aimed at the over 55s to be rented out by the council on a long-term tenancy basis.
Seagate Homes is also committed to updating a children's playground at Snowden Playing Fields as a part of a commitment to provide better facilities for youngsters in Crowland which also include the creation of a skate park and multi-purpose sports and games area.
Parish councillor Reg Boot said: "About four and a half years ago, the council created a group called the Assets Working Party in order to find ways of delivering sustainable income for the parish.
"One of the options was to convert the present allotment land into houses which the council could let at market rents.
"We decided to aim them at the over 55s so that families in Crowland could create a house chain that would see younger people coming into the town.
"There would also be some open market housing built, along with some affordable homes, because we wanted to make sure that the council still had an asset going forward."
Crowland Parish Council is nearing the completion of a new, purpose-built allotments site across from the Abbey Farm site also in James Road.
Allotment holders are expected to move onto the new site by the end of next month, allowing work at Abbey Farm to start in spring or summer 2019, subject to planning consent.
Coun Bryan Alcock, chairman of the assets working party, said: "Like other councils, parishioners expect us to do more, with no more money.
"One of the ways to do that is to make our assets sweatby traanslating the value of the old allotments land into new properties that we can let.
"We believe this is the best plan, but we're also producing a very good allotments site which has fencing and buildings, including a toilet and kitchen.
"Seagate Homes' offer fitted the council's requirements, but it was also imaginative in its use of what we think is a prime site."
Nathan Marshall, of Seagate Homes, said: "We are excited to be working with Crowland Parish Council on what is a fantastic opportunity to deliver some properties for the town.
"Seagate Homes sees this as one of the prime developments for Crowland, with its abbey, sports and recreational grounds."