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Modular homes could be built on former Ridgeon's site

By Ben Comber

Cromwell Road plans include more than 200 new homes, with 90 council homes among them
Cromwell Road plans include more than 200 new homes, with 90 council homes among them

Prefab flats sold at 20 per cent below market rate is one idea that will be brought up with the city council's housing head at a meeting of the full council today (Thursday).

Liberal Democrat councillor Rod Cantrill, who is also the Lib Dems’ Cambridge parlimentary candidate, is urging the city to consider the homes as a way to help key workers get on the housing ladder.

He is proposing the council work with Pocket Living, a London-based developer that builds modular one and two bedroom flats - built off site and assembled on site to reduce time and costs.

The homes are sold at 20 per cent less than local market prices, and owners buy under the agreement that they sell them on for 20 per cent less than local market prices.

There are 2,300 households on the housing register. Cllr Cantrill says that while the 500 homes the council is focussing on delivering as part of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority devolution deal, the housing market in the city is “broken” and the council must do more to help residents across the city.

Cllr Cantrill will say: “The city council appears to have done little to help those hardworking city makers, people like teachers and nurses, who are often the thread that holds the city together and ensures the city works and importantly are not eligible for council housing or support.

“To help these hardworking residents, the city council needs to come forward with specific proposals that will help them to continue to live in Cambridge.”

The Pocket Living properties are described as “well-designed compact spaces, with elements of shared communal space”.

Cllr Cantrill is suggesting the Cromwell Road site, formerly Ridgeon’s builders’ merchants, aquired by the council this month to be considered as a possible pre-fab flats development.

The site has been earmarket for 200 homes, 90 of which would be social housing.


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