Croydon’s Deputy Leader praises Station Approach Road development

A new Oakwood development for AmicusHorizon in Coulsdon has won praise from both London Borough of Croydon’s Deputy Leader and local residents’ associations.

Councillor Alison Butler, Croydon’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Homes, Regeneration and Planning, said the borough needs new homes of every type to tackle its “housing crisis,” when she officially opened 16 new shared ownership flats in Coulsdon. (Wednesday, 14th December).

Commending the joint Oakwood and AmicusHorizon housing association development in Station Approach Road, Councillor Butler said: “We value good design as a council and look for proper base standards and developers who will engage with local communities – and you have ticked all the boxes with this development.”

Croydon’s Deputy Leader Cllr Alison Butler is pictured above (front right) opening the development, with Bunmi Atta of AmicusHorizon housing association, Oakwood Managing Director John Fleetwood (top left) and Oakwood Director Matt Arnold.

The stylish one and two bedroom flats, along with 12 new station parking spaces, have been built on the site of an old Network Rail car park by Coulsdon Town Station, which historically had been the target of anti-social behaviour. It’s part of an Oakwood development of 115 homes, including those on the adjacent former Pinewood Garage site.

“We know there is a housing crisis in Croydon and the council recognises that we need homes of every type, from social housing, to shared ownership and homes to buy,” commented Councillor Butler.
“We also know that improving the economy right across our borough brings a need for sustainable development. New homes bring increased footfall to local businesses and that’s what’s really needed across all our districts.”

Oakwood director Matt Arnold told guests at the opening ceremony that Coulsdon town centre shops had suffered with a loss of traffic and footfall when the by-pass opened. He felt it was clear that the town needed “an injection of people” spending money in the shops and reinvigorating the high street.

He also thanked the four local residents’ associations, who were at the opening – East Coulsdon, Old Coulsdon, Coulsdon West, and Hartley & District – for their continued support.
“We are delighted that we have finished this phase of the development, and credit really has to go to the residents’ associations,” said Mr Arnold. “Their continued input and pragmatic approach throughout has been integral to the success of the scheme.

Mr Charles King, chairman of East Coulsdon Residents’ Association, commented that it was a nice development and “well designed.” He thanked Oakwood Managing Director John Fleetwood and Matt Arnold, for working with the associations throughout the planning process.

“I think putting people in the town centre is important,” said Mr King.
“If you looked at Coulsdon 10 years ago we had 22 empty shops – we are down to seven now. It was clear there were to many big houses and nowhere for young people to move into or for older people to downsize. Your developments have addressed that.”

Bunmi Atta, Regional & Commercial Property Director for Amicus Horizon added that the housing association has been working with Oakwood for 10 years delivering affordable homes in Croydon.
She commented: “As a team we are delighted that this development has opened – central to its success has been the partnership between AmicusHorizon and The Oakwood Group.”

Epsom based developers, The Oakwood Group are celebrating their 30th anniversary in business. In the last decade they have built 235 homes in Croydon with another 227 either on site or in progress, subject to planning.

They have recently secured outline planning permission for 67 residential units and 500 square metres of commercial floor space on the Leaden Hill Industrial Estate, immediately behind the Station Approach Road development, which subject to final approval, will start construction later next year.