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First homes completed at Nationwide’s groundbreaking Oakfield housing development

The first homes at Nationwide Building Society‘s groundbreaking Oakfield housing development in Swindon have been completed – six years after the lender first announced its intention to become a developer of affordable housing.

Swindon-headquartered Nationwide worked with Swindon Borough Council in planning the development on a piece of brownfield land earmarked for housing since 2013. But the project ran into trouble in February 2022 when its construction partner, Mi-space, went into administration.

In July 2022 a new contractor – ethical developer Igloo – was appointed and work finally began on 239 low-energy homes.

This week Igloo announced that the first 20 homes – including two show homes, two shared ownership homes and 16 private sale properties – have been completed.

Phase 1B, which is already underway and is due to complete later this year, will deliver a total of 54 homes, made up of 12 for affordable rent, four shared ownerships, 20 for private sale and 18 affordable rent apartments.

In total, 30 per cent of the 239 homes built at Oakfield will be designated affordable housing and all properties on the development will be EPC A rated, energy efficient, with solar panels and air source heat pumps.

Matt Woolgar, development director at Igloo, said: “We’ve always prioritised sustainability, and building meaningful communities in our developments, but Oakfield has really taken that to the next level.

“We listened to what people wanted and needed from their neighbourhood, so that we could create something more than just a housing development. We’re excited to see the first residents move in, and watch this community really come to life.

“With mixed tenures, shared gardens and a community hub, we know that Oakfield will be an open, connected community which will bring people from all walks of life together, from young people buying their first home, to growing families and those looking for their ‘forever’ home.”

Rachel Smith, social investment manager at Nationwide Building Society, said: “The completion of the first phase of our Oakfield project is an exciting milestone and we now look forward to the rest of the development coming to life.

“This project started back in 2017 and while lots has changed since then, we remain just as dedicated to building a fantastic new community on what was once just a brownfield site. The whole team can’t wait to see Oakfield become part of the Swindon landscape.”