An innovative housing development project – thought to be the first of its kind – that will see construction students (bricklayers/plasterers/carpenters) from West Suffolk College work alongside Havebury Housing Partnership to build seven new homes has been granted planning permission and is now underway.
The scheme, which will build three high specification houses and four flats on a former underused garage site on Mitchell Avenue, Bury St Edmunds will give students unprecedented hands on experience of a real life development project. The project is expected to cost in the region of £900k to complete and has been made possible in part by grant funding from the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA).
Students from all of the trade courses at West Suffolk College will be involved in the project and will work alongside external contractors at every stage of the delivery, including members of the Havebury team, Infinity Architects, Cocksedge Building Contractors and Oxbury and Co. Students will be focused exclusively in the building of the flats and all work they do will contribute towards their course qualifications.
The original designs were submitted by HE students earlier this year on the Construction Management and Building Services courses and developed by one of Havebury’s consultant architects.
Present at the launch was Suzanne Newman, Development Manager at Havebury Housing Partnership, Nikos Savvas, Principal of West Suffolk College, Steven Nugent, Director of Cocksedge Building Contractors and Students from Plastering/Bricklaying/Carpentry courses.
Suzanne Newman, Development Manager at Havebury Housing Partnership said: “We are looking forward to getting the students onsite and creating more affordable homes in St Edmundsbury. This project will provide a fantastic opportunity for students to be involved in creating homes for those in housing need, whilst gaining some valuable work experience”.
Nikos Savvas, Principal of West Suffolk College said, “This collaboration offers an exceptional educational experience to develop the next generation of construction professionals who will be ready to meet the growing demand for new homes in the region.“It is an exceptional project that demonstrates how powerful collaborations between business and education can be. Colleges are the link between education and industry and we are proud of the role we play in providing the workforces of the future and in driving economic regional growth”.