Ground breaking ceremony marks the start of new affordable housing development in Barnsley

Construction of a new affordable housing development in Barnsley has got underway with the breaking of the first ground off Catherine’s Walk in Athersley South.

The honour of breaking the first earth at the site went to Mike Gaskell (Chair of the Board) and Joanna Chambers (Head of Home & Growth) at Leeds & Yorkshire Housing; Councillor Robert Frost (Cabinet Support Member for Place at Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council); Nathan Brough, Regional Director for ENGIE’s Places & Communities division; and Richard Panter from Homes England.

This is the largest new build development that Leeds & Yorkshire Housing Association (LYHA) has undertaken for many years. Once completed, in Autumn 2019, it will provide 54 affordable homes for families and older people in an area of acute housing need. The £5.7 million development will be part funded by a £2 million Homes England grant: it will comprise 40 houses, 8 apartments and 6 bungalows. Five of the homes will be available for shared ownership and the remainder for rent.

The development will be built by South Yorkshire based construction company, Engie and will take approximately fifteen months to complete. It is situated in the middle of an existing housing estate, next to South Athersley Primary School.  LYHA is paying a contribution to the school as part of the planning approval and has been involving local school children in the project already. Joanna Chambers, Head of Home & Growth at LYHA, comments: “We have asked the children to come up with names for the new streets which have now been suggested to Barnsley Council. They have also been busy creating lots of fantastic ‘Danger – Keep Out’ signs to go up around the perimeter fencing.”

“On a wider note I am delighted to see work commence on site and very excited to see the homes take shape. Leeds based architects, Acanthus WSM, have created a very attractively designed scheme with interesting elevational treatments to create a stand out development and I’m sure the new homes will prove very popular. Anyone interested in finding out more about the shared ownership properties should contact

Nathan Brough, Regional Director for ENGIE’s Places & Communities division, said: “After a lot of work in the planning stage, we can now start on site and help turn our partners’ exciting vision into reality. These new homes will provide a significant boost to Barnsley by helping to meet the borough’s housing needs, as well as create employment and training opportunities for local people.”

Councillor Robert Frost, Cabinet Support Member for Place at Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council said: “It’s fantastic to see this development underway. Barnsley Council has ambitious plans for future housing in the borough and by working in partnership with Leeds & Yorkshire Housing Association we are able deliver the highest quality, affordable homes. This is a major development in an area where additional housing is much needed.”