A leading housebuilder is set to break ground soon at a major new development between Harwell and Didcot, as the first phase of 172 homes at Valley Park in Didcot were unanimously approved by local councillors.
Outline planning permission to construct 4,254 homes at Valley Park had previously been secured in 2022, and Persimmon Homes Wessex has now had its first residential phase approved by the planning committee at Vale of White Horse District Council on 27 September.
The homes – 59 of which will be transferred to a housing association partner – will be delivered as part of a zero-carbon ready scheme by the five-star builder.
It will be a no-gas site with all properties equipped with air source heat pumps, electric vehicle charging points and solar panels, as well as cycle storage. Persimmon’s plans will help meet local housing supply and delivers on the local authority’s ‘Good Growth’ and sustainability agendas.
As well as building homes that will create jobs and economic growth locally, the overall consortium-led scheme at Valley Park will also deliver £50m worth of investment with new facilities and amenities such as two new primary schools, a special education school and a healthcare centre.
As part of the commitment, Persimmon and consortium partners will also gift land for the new health centre to the local integrated care board and make a substantial contribution of £2,841,000 towards construction of the facility.
Commenting on the planning committee’s decision, Persimmon Homes Wessex Managing Director Julian Roper said: “We’re delighted to secure planning permission for our first residential phase of 172 zero-carbon ready homes at our exciting new Valley Park development in Didcot.
“We’re proud of our application, which was commended by councillors and demonstrated our commitment to the principles of sustainable, high-quality development, which will deliver a choice of homes to meet local needs.
“Teaming up with our consortium partners, the scheme will bring substantial social and economic benefits to the area, including an investment of over £50 million for schools, roads, transport and local healthcare provision. Our initial phase will also see us transfer 59 quality new homes to a local housing association partner.
“Throughout the planning process we have engaged extensively with key stakeholders, including the District Council and respective local Parish Councils, to understand the needs of nearby communities and ensure their priorities have been accommodated where possible.
“Thanks to their positive cooperation, we’re now set to address local housing needs and expand home ownership opportunities for hundreds of local families in Didcot.”
As part of a high-quality design that retains and preserves significant ecological interests, Persimmon’s scheme will see the installation of 110 bird/swift boxes and the retention of mature hedgerows and trees. Early parts of the development will also see the delivery of a cycle route, a junction on Didcot Road and upgrades to Cow Lane.