Harworth sells first land parcel at Ironbridge development to Barratt and David Wilson Homes

Harworth Group plc, a leading regenerator of land and property for sustainable development and investment, has completed the sale of the first land parcel at its Benthall Grange development, on the site of the former Ironbridge Power Station in Shropshire, to Barratt and David Wilson Homes Mercia. The nine-acre parcel represents the first phase of Harworth’s mixed-use regeneration of the site, which will ultimately see the delivery of over 1,000 homes alongside a range of commercial, leisure and community uses.

Barratt and David Wilson Homes plans to develop 110 houses as part of the first phase, which will range from two to five-bedroom family homes, marketed under the David Wilson Homes brand. The development will follow a detailed design code that reflects the aspirations for the wider site and the distinct character of the local area, including the Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site which lies less than a mile away. The homes will be built in accordance with Barratt and David Wilson Homes’ Building Sustainable Framework

Harworth secured planning for the regeneration of the former Ironbridge Power Station in September 2021, having acquired the 350-acre site in June 2018. In addition to new homes, plans for the development include a retirement village, up to 200,000 sq. ft of employment space comprising offices and light industrial units, and a local centre offering convenience retail and other services. Community amenities will include a new primary school, allotments and sports pitches, while the former power station’s 1930s pumphouse will be retained as part of the proposals and transformed into a flexible space for community and leisure uses.

Sustainability is at the heart of the masterplan for Benthall Grange. The development will incorporate extensive green space, including 56 acres reserved exclusively for protecting biodiversity, and site preparation works have seen the installation of six great crested newt ponds, a bat barn and a 21 metre-tall nesting tower for Peregrine falcons. Harworth has also maximised recycling of materials from the site, reclaiming around 35,000 tonnes of metal and 70,000 tonnes of crushed concrete for reuse in the development, with the remains of the site’s four cooling towers being used to construct new cycle and footpaths.

Construction of this first phase, and marketing for future phases, is expected to begin later in the year, with completion of the entire development expected by 2030.

Andrew Blackshaw, Chief Operating Officer at Harworth, commented: “The sale of our first land parcel is a major milestone for our transformative Ironbridge development, and follows extensive planning, site preparation and engagement with local stakeholders by the Harworth team. We look forward to bringing future phases to the market in the coming year and beyond.”

David Cockroft, Regional Director for the Midlands at Harworth, added: “Barratt and David Wilson Homes are renowned for their attractive, high-quality and sustainable developments, and we are pleased to be working with them on the first phase of Benthall Grange. Their development will act as a key gateway to the site, providing an early sense of place and setting the tone for the wider development. It is testament to Harworth’s vision that within just five years of acquiring a former power station with all its associated infrastructure, we are now in a position to build the first homes of a sustainable new community at the site.”

Dominic Harman, Managing Director at Barratt and David Wilson Homes Mercia added: “We are delighted to have been chosen as the first phase gateway quality developer for Benthall Grange and look forward to working in partnership with Harworth. We are well advanced with our plans on the delivery on what will be a sustainable flagship development in an exceptional, historic and highly desirable location. The Benthall Grange development will follow a history of Barratt and David Wilson Homes working with Harworth on other developments across the country.”