South London town centre set for 518-home development

South London town centre set for 518-home development (iStock)

The recent slowdown in the property market, particularly in London, might lead some to imagine that housebuilding levels might fall in the capital. However, it seems the pressing need for more homes is helping to drive activity forward.

Nowhere is that more true, it appears, than in Bexley. The outer London suburb is set for a 518-home development in the town centre, constructed by Bellway Homes.

The project, which also includes shops and commercial space, will include 110 affordable homes. The multi-block development will cover the vacant land that has been empty since the council moved out of its old headquarters there and into a new building in 2014.

Speaking about the plans, a spokeswoman from Bexley Council remarked: "There is a need for local housing in the borough with many Bexley residents and their families struggling to find good quality, affordable accommodation, which is why the council is committed to providing more affordable homes, and has approved the 518 homes on the former Civic Offices site in Bexleyheath town centre."

The council vote was a close one, with some concerns about the scale of the project and the number of homes available for affordable rent or purchase. At 110, this is way below the 50 per cent level desired by London mayor Sadiq Khan, who will now make a final judgement on whether the scheme can go ahead. If it does get the green light, site clearing work will start as early as next month.

Bellway Homes itself has certainly been busy in London and the south east. In March, it issued a half-yearly statement revealing its order books were up 7.7 per cent compared with 12 months earlier, and that it will build 600 more homes in 2018 than last year. This will take the annual total past the 10,000 mark for the first time in the company's history.