Residents in Sunderland have celebrated moving into their brand-new Thirteen homes in the Grindon area of the city.
Housing company Thirteen handed over the keys to the final seven homes on the Barnes View development, just off Nookside in Grindon, after construction on the site was completed in March.
Altogether, the development – which was built by construction firm Engie – includes 39 apartments and seven bungalows for Thirteen’s customers, as well as a range of homes for private sale.
Martin Ogle is one resident to have recently moved into his new bungalow after having previously lived in a high-rise flat overlooking the Stadium of Light. Martin, a retired manager with a cleaning company, said he is extremely happy in his new home.
He said: “I moved into the bungalow at the end of March after living in a high-rise in Monkwearmouth for about four years. I was really happy to move here as I now have space for the grandchildren to come around and play – they’re loving their new slide in the garden!
“This is a brilliant place. I found out about the estate after coming to visit one of my old neighbours who’d moved into a Thirteen flat around the corner. It was a really easy process to apply for the bungalow as I just phoned up the neighbourhood co-ordinator who came around for a chat, she put in the application and I was moving within about two weeks.
“I’m originally from this side of the town and I used to play in King George’s Park when I was growing up, so it’s nice to be back.”
All 46 properties provide much-needed affordable accommodation in the city and were rented to customers very quickly, allowing residents to start enjoying the modern facilities they offer.
Kay Glew, Director of Neighbourhoods at Thirteen, said: “I’m really pleased that Martin’s content with his new home. Seeing customers quickly settled and happy with the service provided by Thirteen, really makes all the hard work on building new homes worthwhile.
“We try our best to find the most appropriate properties for people and I’m glad we managed to find the right home with the right facilities for Martin and everyone else on the development.”
Fiona Brown, Executive Director for Neighbourhoods at Sunderland City Council, said: “I think these properties are fantastic and are designed very sympathetically so they fit in well with the surrounding area.
“The council has worked closely with Thirteen on this project and will continue to work with the company on a number of other projects in the near future, including our empty properties programme in the Millfield area.
“Barnes View fits in well with the council’s housing strategy as it offers choice for individuals at the same time as adding to the community spirit of the area by bringing together people who have a range of different housing needs.
“The new homes offer more choice for residents and I’m sure that the development will have a very positive effect for people and the local area now and for many years to come.”