Newham

Historic Boleyn Ground redevelopment approved by Newham Council creating 211 affordable homes and 185 jobs

10 March 2016 in Housing and Mayor

Mayor of Newham announces intention to invest a further £18 million to increase the number of affordable homes to 295

Newham Council has kicked off the redevelopment of West Ham United Football Club’s Boleyn Ground by approving a proposal to transform the site, netting hundreds of affordable homes and jobs as part of the historic deal.

At a meeting of the council’s Strategic Development Committee tonight (Thursday 10 March), councillors backed the scheme which would turn the former Boleyn Ground in Green Street, Upton Park, into a high quality residential development. The application has been brought forward jointly by Barratt Homes and Galliard Homes.

The approval from the council comes after more than a year of robust negotiations by the council which has hammered out a deal with the developers. The developers initially offered no affordable homes on the site which was unacceptable under the council’s core strategy. The current offer of 25 per cent affordable housing equates to 211 homes out of the 842 planned for the site. Of these, more than half will be family sized units. Additionally, developers promised to deliver a neighbourhood centre to provide facilities for local residents.

The Mayor of Newham, Sir Robin Wales, has tonight also announced his intention to invest an additional £18 million into affordable housing on the site. This will provide a further ten per cent of affordable homes which the council will ensure are offered at fairer rents that residents can afford. It is anticipated this money will come from affordable housing funding available to the council. This could include Section 106 funding. This will bring the total amount of affordable housing on the site to 35 per cent equating to 295 homes.

The developer’s proposal will see the current ground demolished and replaced with 15 blocks of varying heights providing new homes made up of a mixture of different tenures and a community neighbourhood space. To commemorate the design of the iconic ground, two 13 storey blocks will reflect the castle tower gatehouses which currently greet visitors to the ground and four to eleven storey low rise blocks will mark the location of where the stands currently sit.

The Boleyn Ground is of historic significance to Upton Park as it has been the home of West Ham United FC for 112 years. The Premier League team will move out of the ground to their new home at the former Olympic Stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park at the end of this season.

To preserve this history, a pedestrianised legacy route will be included through the centre of the development. The two trees which make up the memorial garden currently by the main gates of the stadium will be retained. These trees are used by West Ham United FC supporters to commemorate the death of family and friends. The halfway line and centre circle of the ground’s existing pitch will form part of this route and it is also proposed to retain some of the existing stands.

Councillor Ken Clark, Chair of Strategic Development Committee and Executive Member for Building Communities, Public Affairs, Regeneration and Planning said: “We have worked closely with the developers to maximise the affordable housing offer on this important site. The progress we have made has been incredible moving from zero to 25 per cent affordable housing on site.

“We are proud of Upton’s Park’s diversity and sporting legacy and we have always made it clear the redevelopment must work for the whole community. I am proud to have scored a hat trick with this scheme – with hundreds of affordable homes, jobs and a lasting legacy for the area.”

Sir Robin Wales, Mayor of Newham said: “The local community is at the heart of all regeneration projects in the borough and I am committed to ensuring residents benefit, whether it is through securing homes they can afford to live in, priority for jobs and new community and public spaces.

“I want to open this historic development up to even more of our residents, that is why I intend to make this investment of £18 million to raise the percentage of affordable housing up to 35 per cent. Other developers must provide affordable housing as part of any regeneration proposals they bring to us. We will do all we can to ensure as many homes as possible are within reach of our residents.”