New housing development, which is entirely affordable housing, officially opens in Weeting, near Brandon
- Credit: Ian Burt
The first families have moved into their new homes on development which is comprised purely of affordable housing.
The Fenlands consists of a mixture of 64 houses, apartments and bungalows, and is situated on Fengate Drove in Weeting, near Brandon.
A celebration was held to mark the completion of the development's first phase, which has seen families move into 11 shared ownership and 12 affordable rent homes.
Another four are still available to rent and 42 homes will be completed later this year.
A ribbon was cut by the Steventon family who were one of the first families to move in.
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Antony and Kimberley along with their children Kyra, 10, six-year-old Alfie and two-year-old Bella have been settling into their new home.
Mr Steventon, 42, said: 'There is a real shortage of three bedroom homes on an affordable basis. When the homes at The Fenlands came up we were so excited.
'We were lucky enough to be allocated one of the affordable rent properties.'
Mrs Steventon, 32, added: 'The Fenlands development is really nice. It fits in well with the local area and looks like it belongs.
'The properties here are desperately needed for local people. We're hoping to be here for a long time. We're settled and it already feels like home.'
The development, managed by Cotman Housing Association, part of the Places for People Group, is believed to be the largest site in the region to offer all properties on an affordable basis.
Work on the 1.5-hectare site, which was previously a timber yard, started in May last year.
Designed by Norwich-based Chaplin Farrant, the development is inspired by local architectural styles such as the nearby Brandon railway station.
As the site is close to a Special Protection Area for stone-curlews, a dog walking route has also been incorporated into the scheme.
Jane Warnes, managing director at Cotman Housing Association, said: 'It's fantastic to have reached the completion of the first phase of this development.
'We're committed to providing houses for people at all stages of their lives and hope that The Fenlands will be used as a blueprint for future affordable developments. It's so rewarding to see the first people moving in and calling The Fenlands home.'