Mill Race

  • Client North Star Housing Group
  • Location West Auckland, Bishop Auckland
  • Contract Value £2.7m

Scheme overview

The £2.7m Mill Race design and build contract was constructed in West Auckland on behalf of North Star Housing Group.

The East Green Care Home in West Auckland had been derelict for almost a decade and had over the years fallen victim to vandals and Anti-Social Behaviour. Gus Robinson Developments identified the land as a potential site for regeneration that would provide much needed affordable housing in the area.

The Gus Robinson team worked with North Star to create a development of 25 new build homes, comprising of 2 and 3 bedroom two-storey houses and bungalows. The team then went to work on preparing the planning application which was submitted on 5th January 2018 with approval following on 29th March 2018. Work commenced on site on 26th March 2018 and was completed on time and within the client’s budget set by 4th December 2019.

The Mill Race scheme was developed overlooking the village green and within the boundaries of the conservation area of West Auckland. This meant the Gus Robinson team had to work closely with the Heritage and Conservation officer within the Local Authority to ensure that the scheme design was at the forefront of proposals to be submitted to Local Authority Planning team. The homes created had to blend in with the existing properties and surrounding landscape, whilst providing a high design quality. There was also a stone wall to the north of the scheme which the local council wanted to keep in situ.  Innovative measures were taken to ensure the flood risks were addressed, whilst maintaining the wall’s current state.

As part of the consultation process the team spoke with residents whose properties bounded the site and worked with them to provide new boundary fences to their properties to ensure they were safe and secure. This was seen as a significant benefit as the old care home building previously there was in a state of disrepair.

In addition, the demolition of the existing East Green Care Home building required extensive ecological mitigation measures to be incorporated to ensure that the historic bat roost was monitored closely during the demolition. Gus Robinson Developments were in close liaison with Natural England to ensure all licences were in place to demolish the care home in compliant manner.

  • Sector Highways and Infrastructure
    New Build
  • Service Affordable Housing
  • Size 8 bungalows and 17 houses
  • Contract period June 2018 - November 2019
  • Architect NORR Consultants
  • Civil / structural engineers Portland Consulting Engineers
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