Goram Homes plans to develop around 50 homes on the old school site at Novers Hill, at least 30% of which will be for council housing and shared ownership. A design competition panel, which included local community members and Friends of the Western Slopes, unanimously chose an eco-focused plan from gcp Chartered Architects (https://www.goramhomes.co.uk/winning-design-revealed-for-our-novers-hill-site/). Our next steps involve finding a development partner to build the homes with us. It is important to us that any partner we work with shares our vision for the site as well as our values surrounding ecology and community engagement. We are also continuing to work with gcp Chartered Architects to develop the competition winning design.
The old school site is currently overgrown and needs maintenance to make it accessible, tidy and safe for our next steps. This maintenance work will start on January 22nd and will take approximately 2 weeks. It will involve cutting-back of brambles and trimming of long grass. The work is being done before bird nesting season (beginning in March) and the grass will be kept long enough to avoid disturbing slow worms during their hibernation season. The site’s proximity to the Western Slopes requires very careful and sensitive management, and an ecologist will be on site during the maintenance. There will be no cutting down of trees as part of this work.
We will keep everyone updated as this project develops. Our plan to build much-needed new homes that respect the ecology of the site, and any maintenance work we do will be with the same level of sensitivity.