The Deeley Group recently outlined its plans for growth and that will see a greater focus on providing affordable homes.
This emphasis is based on market need, our track record in successfully delivering projects, – either on our own or for sector clients – and our in-house capability.
Homes England has increased its funding and there is greater Government emphasis on delivering more homes and ensuring there is sufficient affordable housing – which is what is driving the market.
Therefore, there is a need for more stock and this has meant there is more demand from registered providers. We are in a very good position to help deliver against that demand across all forms of affordable housing – social rent, affordable rent, shared ownership and the recently announced First Homes.
We can – and do – work on projects of all sizes and scales but at present, the ‘sweet-spot’ for the majority of registered providers is in the 30 to 60-unit range.
This is generally due to the numbers being too small for volume builders to get involved.
Some of the more established registered providers are now venturing into larger schemes if they are in particular areas of growth and are willing to push as far as 150-200 units in some cases.
However, once unit numbers exceed 50-60 plots there is often a need to incorporate a percentage of private housing into the scheme as local authorities are hesitant to allow such large affordable-only schemes.
One strategy which is particularly effective related to affordable housing is the Rural Exceptions Policy. This is a national and, in most cases, local policy which allows affordable housing to be delivered outside of settlement boundaries and outside of the development plan.
This policy is relatively restrictive in some places and is often limited in size depending on the size of the settlement. There has been a recent appeal decision where the inspector overturned the local authority’s refusal of a rural exceptions development of 128 homes in Burton-upon-Trent.
This has set a precedent for affordable housing undersupply being given ‘significant weight’ within a planning balance argument and will lead to the delivery of some large sites over the coming years. These sites have even been known to secure planning within the green belt.
The introduction of the new First Homes scheme at the end of June, which is now included within the definition of Affordable Housing, will constitute the first 25 per cent of all on-site provisions going forward. We are very keen to explore this new model which should present opportunities across the market to offer a more diverse range of affordable homes for the people that need them.
One common theme that we have noticed is that Affordable Housing Providers are now becoming much more commercial given the scale of the grant funding that is available and they are being aggressive in pursuing opportunities which suit their own personal growth ambitions.
We have worked in the affordable and commercial housing sectors and that, along with our experience in construction and development, makes us very well placed to help deliver schemes which will make a telling difference to the housing shortage.
It is also why we see the sector a key to our growth in the medium and longer term.
The firm was keen to offer some support to the local community to help fund an ‘eco’ feature at St John the Divine Church in Willenhall.
Coventry City Council put Deeley – which is celebrating its 85th anniversary, in touch with St John the Divine Church in Willenhall.
The firm donated £250 towards St John’s half-term school holiday’s ‘messy church’ project, taking place this week.
The ‘messy church’ includes eco-biodiversity-based crafts for families to take part in, such as creating bird feeders, growing sunflowers, runner beans and cress.
Each school holiday, the Church has been running events, with an average of 450-500 meals being provided per session – particularly during the pandemic.
The church partners with other local organisations including the Family Hub, Hagard Centre, Library and Betty Ennis Foundation to provide support to the Willenhall community.
Vicar, Rev Pam Howell, and Curate, Rev Charlotte Jackson both of St John the Divine, were delighted at the offer of support, and said: “These events are only possible through the support of grant funding and donations for which the church and community are very grateful. There is always a very positive response from the families to what is on offer.”
Edward Hudson, Deeley Construction’s Business Development Manager, said: “St John the Divine and the City Council are clearly doing a great job not only supporting the community by providing some great half term entertainment, but also creating interest in the environment and the food chain so we were only too happy to help.
“Our work with St John the Divine is just one element of the community engagement we have undertaken during the construction at a local project.
“Using a local contractor greatly benefits local communities – on the local project 21 per cent of the budget has been committed to social value in the local community.”
Cllr John Mutton, Councillor for Binley and Willenhall, said: “It’s fantastic to see the backing from Deeley. The church plays an important role in supporting people here in our local community, and it has been throughout the pandemic, and this has been greatly appreciated by the community.”
Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, added: “I’ve visited various community venues across the city during the pandemic where venues like St John the Divine Church have been playing a crucial part in providing food and other support to those people who need it most.
“The gesture from Deeley is helping people when it matters most and is an example of how business can play an active and positive role in communities. I encourage other businesses to get involved by contacting the Council to see how they could support the good work going on in Coventry. A big thank you to everyone involved.
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PICTURE CAPTION: Sowmya Bharathiraja and Hashini Bharathiraya are pictured with (left to right) Pam Howell (Vicar), Councillor Ram Lakha, Councillor John Mutton, Charlotte Jackson (Curate), Councillor David Welsh, Sarah Gristwood (Coventry City Council), Edward Hudson (Deeley).
Deeley Construction completed the improvement works at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum in April, while it was still closed to the public due to Covid-19 restrictions.
It is now back open to the public and visitors can enjoy several newly refurbished galleries, four redeveloped larger galleries and improved welcome area, café, retail area and toilet facilities.
It is set to host its first major events when UnNatural History and 2 Tone: Lives and Legacies open to the public on May 29, the first in a year-long programme of events as part of Coventry’s UK City of Culture 2021 schedule.
Work completed to the gallery will significantly reduce its carbon footprint, while providing the perfect environmental conditions for showcasing world-leading art collections.
The several refurbished galleries can be found on the first floor with new wall linings, flooring and lighting.
While the four redeveloped galleries have been modernised and enable the hosting of large, world-class exhibitions.
Deeley Construction completed the redevelopment work with many of the gallery’s art pieces still in place and acted under strict procedures set by on-site art specialists.
Martin Gallagher, Managing Director of Deeley Construction, said: “We’re proud to have played our part in improving one of the city’s leading art and cultural institutions ahead of a huge year for Coventry.
“Our team liaised closely with the gallery’s art curators to ensure works progressed smoothly and that the collections already housed at the Herbert were protected.
“We completed the works largely when the gallery was closed to the public, so it’s fantastic to see people finally being able to enjoy the results of the finished renovation and the new spaces that have been created.”
Paul Breed, Chief Executive of Culture Coventry, added: “We are delighted to finally be back open and able to share our new-look spaces with visitors.
“It has been great to work with a trusted, local, family firm such as Deeley Construction as the main contractor on this project. The work completed will not only prove essential to up-scaling events for our City of Culture year, but also help us to achieve our ambitious legacy plans.”
Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, added: “It’s such a boost to everyone to see visitors at The Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, especially after the revamp and the extra spaces that have been created.
“I can’t wait to visit myself. Lots of people and organisations have been supporting and working on the improvements and everyone deserves a lot of credit after the challenges of the pandemic.
“This is a venue that people of all ages can enjoy for many years to come.”
To find out more about the calendar of upcoming events at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum visit https://www.theherbert.org/
Midlands-based Deeley Construction has been appointed by LondonMetric Property to build the new 10,000 sq ft store just south of the city centre.
The retail unit will be built on the land adjacent to the existing DFS store on John Kempe Way and work is also being completed to renovate the front of the existing DFS store by Deeley Construction.
Work is expected to be completed by September 2021, with the store expected to open to customers by the end of the year
The £1.8 million development will be sustainably built and is expected to achieve BREEAM Excellent status, the world’s leading sustainability accreditation.
Deeley Construction will be using responsibly sourced sustainable materials during the build, and will also be installing photovoltaic panels on the roof to generate energy, with electric vehicle charging points in the car park too.
The store has been designed by architects R G Partnership, and the development will be project managed by Sharman Projects.
Steve Turner, construction director at Deeley Construction, said: “As partners with LondonMetric Property on this development we have been involved from the early stages of the scheme and it is great to see work starting up on site.
“Deeley Construction has supported with value engineering and assisted with closing pre-commencement planning conditions, demonstrating our ability to provide end-to-end support for clients.
“From our early discussions with LondonMetric we concluded that this would be a sustainable build and we have been taking steps to improve the sustainability factor of the build.
“The work is being completed in a live retail environment and our team have ensured there will be minimal disruption for customers visiting the adjacent DFS store.
“The new store will generate employment for people living in the area and be a strong addition to the retail offering in south Birmingham.
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Tom Pinder, Development Manager of LondonMetric Property, said: “We are excited to be working with Deeley Construction on this development.
“Having worked together on a number of projects previously, we have developed a strong partnership, which ultimately helps us harness our combined strengths to deliver excellent quality real estate for our occupiers.”
PICTURE CAPTION: From left to right – Steve Turner (Deeley Construction), David Matthews (R G Partnership), Tom Pinder (LondonMetric) and Paul Sharman (Sharman Projects).
Insider’s Midlands Residential Property Awards is now in its sixth year and Deeley Group is in the running for three of the 15 categories available.
The £3.9 million development of the Coal Yard Road in Ryton-in-Dunsmore has been shortlisted in two categories – Small Residential Project of the Year and Residential Regeneration Project of the year.
The project was delivered in partnership with Platform Housing, Rugby Borough Council and Homes England.
It was formerly a coal yard and the brownfield site is now home to 21 affordable properties. The shortlist also sees Platform Housing nominated for the Social Housing award.
Deeley Group has also been shortlisted in the Skills & Training Scheme of the Year category.
This is for the delivery of the training scheme whereby it regularly promotes the integration of trainees into all departments of the business including site management, quantity surveying, administration, accounting and marketing.
Currently 16 per cent of its workforce is in the trainee programme or undergoing further education.
Peter Deeley, Managing Director of the Deeley Group, was named Property Personality of the Year at the awards in 2012.
He said: “We are delighted to have been shortlisted in three categories for the 2021 Insider Midlands Residential Property Awards.
“The Coal Yard development at Ryton-on-Dunsmore demonstrates the value you can create from a redundant brownfield site through a regeneration project.
“It meets regional priorities for ‘brownfield first’ development and we are continuing this with our latest affordable housing development in Wyken, Coventry, with Stonewater.
“Our commitment to training and developing staff is something we are immensely proud of at the Deeley Group, so we are very pleased that our training scheme has also received recognition by being shortlisted this year.”
The event has secured 77 submissions from 46 organisations, compared to last year’s 60 entries.
The winners will be announced on Thursday, July 22 at The Eastside Rooms in Birmingham.
David Currie has joined the firm as Land and Partnerships Director and will help spearhead the company’s drive to grow its Affordable Living brand and increase its share of the affordable housing market.
The firm, which is celebrating its 85th anniversary, has a long history in home building and is looking to make affordable housing 30 per cent of its group business over the next five years.
The new role will see Currie, who has more than 25 years’ experience in the industry, work to further increase Deeley Group’s extensive land holdings and also establish and strengthen relationships with providers in the affordable homes sector.
Currie has had senior roles at CBRE and Public Sector Plc and is returning to the city where he started his career to help drive the expansion.
He said: “The Deeley Group is very highly respected in the industry and it has always made affordable housing a priority. It is looking to grow that part of its business over the next few years and, with construction, development and housing at its core, it is very well placed to do that.
“I have worked with the Eleanor Deeley in the past and I was really impressed with the vision the company has for growth, alongside what it stands for in terms of community and team working. The company might be 85-years-old, but it is very agile and ambitious in its approach.”
Deeley has worked in housing since its formation and has partnered providers including Orbit Homes, Stonewater, Platform Housing Group, and Housing 21 in recent years as well as developing its own sites for sale in the Midlands.
Eleanor Deeley said: “We are focused on growing our Affordable Living business and David will build upon the strong relationships we have in this very active market.
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We are delighted to welcome David to the Deeley team.
“Our reputation and relationships in that market are very strong. Our longevity, financial performance and ability to deliver for clients is very well established and it is vital for providers to be partnered with companies that have a proven pedigree.
“We have such a strong construction arm it allows us to engineer developments from the outset, meaning there is more value to be gained for partners.
“David’s appointment is a key factor in our growth plans. He has an excellent track record and he actually used to be my client before I joined Deeley, so we go back a decade, and have a very similar approach.”