13/01/2023

New affordable homes for local residents opened in Watford

Various people who were involved in the development of Whippendell Marine standing outside

Hightown Housing Association unveiled 81 new affordable homes at Whippendell Marine, in Watford, at an official opening event this week.

Elected Mayor of Watford, Peter Taylor, officially declared the homes open alongside the Chair and Chief Executive of Hightown at a special ribbon-cutting event on Tuesday 10 January. Guests included Councillors and staff from Watford Borough Council, residents, staff and Board members from Hightown; plus contractors and consultants involved in the development.

Located on Whippendell Road and within a short walk of the centre of Watford, the new development brings 81 new homes to the area in the form of one-, two- and three-bedroom flats for rent and shared ownership. Residents benefit from local amenities and Watford Hospital and train station are nearby.

The development includes 45 homes for rent allocated to people in housing need nominated by Watford Borough Council and 36 shared ownership (part rent, part buy) flats across three apartment blocks surrounding a central courtyard. The names of the apartment blocks – Sonar House, Seaborne House and Compass House - reflect the site's history as a place where naval and marine applications were produced.

The homes were built on brownfield land, previously occupied by Whippendell Electrical Manufacturing Company for over 100 years. The development was constructed by Ridgepoint Homes with whom Hightown agreed a package deal for both land and construction. Grant funding was provided by Homes England.

David Bogle, Hightown’s Chief Executive, said:

"We recently reached our 8,000th home here at Whippendell Marine which is a significant milestone for Hightown, so it’s fantastic to be celebrating the opening of the development. 

“The development is providing affordable homes for local people and families who cannot afford to rent or buy at market rates. This is our second substantial development project in Watford in recent years and we are delighted to contribute much-needed affordable homes that will help the council with its mission to end homelessness in the town.

“I am most grateful for the funding we received from Homes England and the support from Watford Borough Council. I would like to thank everyone involved in this project for their hard work in delivering another high-quality development.”

Elected Mayor of Watford, Peter Taylor, said:

"I am delighted to officially open these new affordable homes for local people. Watford Borough Council is pleased to have been able to work in partnership with Hightown Housing Association to provide good quality homes for people within our community who have been priced out of buying or renting on the private market. These fantastic new homes will benefit many local people and families for years to come."

Jon's story

Hightown's 8,000th resident, Jon, explains what his new flat means to him.