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Parts of Chatham have been transformed from run-down wasted garages to new homes

By Lynn Cox

An area of Chatham has been transformed from wasted garages, outdated prefabricated homes into a new housing development.

Three roads in the town, Cross Street, Cavalier Place and Eldon Street, have now been turned into one community which now has new modern energy efficient homes.

The site, close to The Brook Theatre, was previously occupied by derelict garages, poorly insulated, prefabricated bungalows and outdated and unpopular bedsit flats.

The new homes in Chatham have transformed the area
The new homes in Chatham have transformed the area

Since 2014, Medway's largest landlord, mhs homes has invested almost £12 million transforming the area by redeveloping the three sites.

The site was shortlisted last year for an Inside Housing Award as Best Regeneration Project outside London.

Stephanie Goad, operations director at mhs homes, said: "Our work at The Brook in Chatham is an outstanding example of urban regeneration combining three sites to form one community.

The new homes in Chatham
The new homes in Chatham

“Our ultimate ambition is to help end the housing crisis in north Kent.

"By 2021 we’ll build at least 600 new homes, of which at least 85% will be affordable.

Seventy-seven homes have been built across the three sites, 66 of which are affordable; 44 are for affordable rent and 22 for shared ownership. The other 11 are market rent homes.

The new homes in Cross Street, Eldon Street and Upbury Way
The new homes in Cross Street, Eldon Street and Upbury Way

Cross Street is the final phase of this three-part development and will be finally completed in May.

It has 50 homes; 20 for affordable rent, 11 for market rent and 19 shared ownership ones, which are available through mhs homes' sales agent Red Loft.

The development was officially opened on Wednesday, April 25, opening event took place on Wednesday 25 April, alongside mhs homes' partner Chartway Group.

The new homes on Upbury Way
The new homes on Upbury Way

Tim McLoughlin, projects director at Chartway Group added: “The completion of this scheme is a real success story for all those involved. It’s been a pleasure to deliver these energy efficient modern homes in a key location and we’re proud to say we built them.”

Steven Harper, 54, moved into his affordable rent home in Constance House, Cross Street last month.

He used to live at Bligh Way in Strood but was relocated through an innovative new scheme.

For the first time ever, a unique agreement with Medway Council allowed mhs home to hold 25% of the new homes at Cross Street to offer to its existing tenants.

“It's a very nice, clean building.

"It's right on top of the high street, thumbs up to whoever thought about building these homes here, it's really helped to change the area around.

“If people want decent housing this is the way forward - building this kind of property."

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