Swaffham Town Council to apply for £6 million loan to fund new 51 home plan

PUBLISHED: 16:58 17 August 2018 | UPDATED: 16:59 17 August 2018

Town clerk Richard Bishop. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Town clerk Richard Bishop. Picture: Matthew Usher.

© Archant Norfolk 2014

Swaffham town councillors have agreed to apply for a £6 million government loan to fund the development of 51 new homes.

The homes would be built on land at Days Field.

The application for the public works loan was agreed at a meeting on Thursday August 16 and requires the approval of the secretary of state to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

The application has been submitted with the aim of raising capital funds to service the development of Days Field into residential housing. The council will be using the general power of competence, a scheme which aims to give councils more power, to develop and manage the project.

The mayor of Swaffham, councillor Colin Houghton, said: “This is an exciting project for the town which can leave a legacy in the form of capital monies received to invest back into the town.

“It will be our first use of the general power of competence and if the consent to borrow is granted by the ministry, it will keep the council in total control of this project from start to finish. The main objective is to create a nice development of 51 properties on the council’s land, costing the council tax payer nothing, both now and in the future.”

Swaffham Town Council plans to make full inquiries with their solicitors if the consent to borrow is granted by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

The town clerk will also prepare a draft cost plan and projected income which will then be amended by a professional quantity surveyor.

The town clerk Richard Bishop said: “There is a long way to go but we have been working behind the scenes to cut through all the red tape. Managing the development of Days Field from beginning through to building the final house, borrowing money in the process, is in fact the lowest risk option considered.

“There are a lot of hoops to jump through before we get to start work on site but councillors have been brave in taking this decision. “If the aim at the outset is to not cost the council tax payer money to deliver this project, the bonus of delivering it will be that the extra income will save the council tax payer money year after year.”

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