Families are moving into new Council homes on the Firbeck estate, and more new properties will soon be available to rent.
Community regeneration specialist, Keepmoat is building 42 new homes on behalf of West Lancashire Borough Council on the estate in Skelmersdale as the final phase of the £8 million Firbeck Revival Project.
Some of the new properties were ready for people to move into in late spring and the final ones will be available to rent in August 2016. They have been built with the requirements of modern families.
These are just the second set of new Council homes built in West Lancashire in the last 20 years. They consist of 14 one-bedroom and 12-two bedroom apartments, and 12 two-bedroom and four three-bedroom houses.
Some of the new apartments have the appearance of semi-detached houses. All 42 homes are attractive, energy efficient properties which have gas central heating, each flat has its own parking space and allocated garden area. The properties are fitted with bat boxes to house creatures living in the nearby woods, supporting a habitat for an endangered species.
Councillor Jenny Patterson, portfolio holder for Housing and Landlord Services, said: “I am delighted that the final batch of new homes on Firbeck will soon be available for families to move into. The whole Firbeck project has been a fantastic success and shows what can be achieved when we all work together.”
Keepmoat is the principal contractor building the houses and flats to the Council’s specifications. Their services were acquired through the Procure Plus framework. Arcus are providing architectural and employer’s agent services for the project.
Frank Mondino, area director for Keepmoat in the North West, said: “All partners involved in this project have worked cohesively and with a shared view of encouraging local input. We have maintained our commitment to communicating effectively with tenants and residents and their support has played a key part in the success so far. We look forward to welcoming our final residents and showcasing this great new development.”
The Firbeck Revival Project, which forms part of the wider Skelmersdale Town Centre Regeneration Project, was drawn up after extensive consultation with tenants and residents about how they wanted their homes to be improved.
As well as the new homes the project has seen a number of other major improvements to the estate which will benefit people living on the estate for years to come. The Council-owned properties have had new kitchens and bathrooms installed and a programme of external works transformed the appearance of the estate with double-glazed windows, doors, new roofs and loft insulation. Brick bin stores at the front of the houses were removed and new canopies fitted over the front doors.
All private home owners on Firbeck took up a Council grant (which is repayable when properties are sold) to have some or all of the external improvements carried out to their homes.