WORK has started on a development of affordable homes by a social landlord.

Cestria Community Housing is building 14, two-bed homes at Primrose Crescent, Bournmoor, near Chester-le-Street, and held a sod cutting ceremony today (Wednesday, February 25) to mark the start.

Cestria has already spent £2m on external improvements such as fencing and creating off-street parking to 220 properties it has in the area.

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Primrose Crescent is Cestria’s second affordable housing new-build project and is the next stage of regeneration for Bournmoor.

Each energy-efficient home will be designed to the Government’s Code for Sustainable Homes level 3 and will include energy and environmental features such as rainwater harvesting, improved insulation in walls, windows and the roof and recycling waste management measures. These homes will include car parking, private gardens and a courtyard-style garden.

The scheme received £210,000 from the Homes and Communities Agency’s Affordable Homes Guarantee Programme and will be built by Galliford Try Partnerships North,.

The social landlord’s chief executive, Paul Fiddaman, said: “We are delighted to see work commencing on site in Bournmoor. This is our second new build development project since the completion of 22 two bedroom bungalows at Crossleas in Sacriston and our next development of 24 two-bedroom homes at The Green in Nettlesworth.

“In addition to investing in our current properties in the area, this development supports our overall growth strategy and will provide much-needed, high-quality affordable homes for local people that meet their needs now and in the future and I look forward to helping to unveil these exciting new homes in the future.”