Filton land deal signals upturn

Part of the former Filton airfield near Bristol, which has outline planning consent for 273 new homes, has changed hands in a deal brokered by land agents CJH Land.
Barratt David Wilson will progress the development after purchasing the 11.62 acre residential site from Bovis. It is part of the larger Charlton Hayes development, which has planning consent for a total of 2,200 homes.
CJH Land, based in Flax Bourton, near Bristol say the development could progress to provide new homes for the area as early as March and is a sign that there is renewed confidence in the housing market.
Director Chris Glover said the eight-figure deal at Charlton Hayes was part of a renewed enthusiasm for land buying by new home providers, who are encouraged by sales being achieved.
He said: “Increased on-site activity in the housing sector in the first weeks of 2012 suggests the major housebuilders are adjusting their portfolios to obtain traction despite the difficult trading conditions.
“This site was offered to the market on a discreet basis with the strict instruction that the transaction must be completed by Christmas 2011.We managed the entire marketing process in a restricted period of time and achieved four unconditional proposals for the land.
 “We are seeing a lot more activity in the sector and are encouraged by the levels achieved on this high profile site. The figures are not far off the highs achieved in 2007 – before the downturn.
“While trading conditions remain tough house builders are reporting increased traffic in their showhomes and are seeing a better quality of buyer coming forward.”
Chris Glover said national housebuilders were now looking to the future seeking different ways to press ahead with development despite the downturn.

“This could mean proceeding with ten smaller deals rather than one big one, which is broadly what has happened here.”

The Charlton Hayes development is a key element in  South Gloucestershire Council’s  core strategy – the planning blueprint which will shape housing development across the region for the next 15 years.
Approved in December 2011, the document  proposes that 5,700 homes will be constructed in the Cribbs Causeway and Patchway areas, with a total of 2,500 on the old Filton Airfield. BAE Systems is planning to shut the airfield at the end of 2012.
The unconditional sale of the land was completed in late December last year.