Doubts raised over Craylands rebuild: Basildon Council struggling to find cash

Craylands

Craylands

First published in Echo News
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A MAJOR question mark hangs over half of Basildon’s biggest regeneration project, after the council admitted it has no cash for it.

Just 592 homes out of 1,310 planned for the Craylands regeneration, the biggest project of its kind in the East of England, are definitely in the bag, the Echo can reveal.

They form part of the first two phases of the project, but Basildon Council has yet to find any cash for the last two phases – meaning hundreds of homes could be in jeopardy.

With residents left in limbo, senior Tories admitted they may have to scale back plans for the fourth and final phase of the 12-year regeneration – due to start in 2017 – after admitting it is looking “very, very difficult”.

Tony Ball, leader of Basildon Council, said: “I appreciate there is nothing worse than uncertainty and we have been open with residents that we still have clear hopes to finish what we started. Phase Four is looking to be very difficult because of the owners currently in the homes.”

The last stage of the rebuild would mean the council having to buy out homeowners currently on site, but that is estimated to cost £23million.

The authority is looking to scale back the final stage, and has applied to the South East Enterprise Partnership for £6million of Government cash to kickstart the redevelopment.

Questions also remain over the third phase of about 245 homes – due to start in 2016 – with Mr Ball admitting no cash has been lined up so far. Mr Ball added that bids had gone in to unnamed organisations.

The first two phases of the huge £250million regeneration have been funded by the Government, but that cash runs out next year, when the next comprehensive spending review is due to take place.

Phil Turner, the council’s cabinet member for housing, added: “We have told the residents the bad news and they are in a bit of a twilight zone as they don’t know whether to do up their houses or not. It’s a bit of a blow to them.”

The project, which was first mooted in 2003, got approval in November 2006 and Swan Housing was awarded the contract.

It was expected to take about 15 years to complete, but a decade on, Phase One is still yet to be completed.

Nigel Smith, leader of the opposition Labour party, said: “We could even go as far to call this a crisis situation if they do not proceed to finish the project.

“Labour has always been against flogging off the council homes and now we have a serious situation where the council is looking to cut corners, but what has been done, has been done really well.”

Southend Standard: Nigel Smith on Craylands estate

Development blighted with delays

CRAYLANDS estate was built in the Sixties, but decades later homes were found to be not of a sufficient standard.

In 2002, regeneration plans were first mooted, and Basildon Council successfully applied for Government cash. 

Plans were finally given outline permission in 2006. A community hall, health centre, and new shops were also proposed.

Demolition is also taking place in phases. In phase one 337 homes will be built. A total of 131 homes have been built so far. Another 206 are under construction.

Work was delayed in 2012 while the council bought out homeowners’ properties. Phase two is earmarked to start in 2015 – three years behind schedule.

Some 500 homes were proposed for phase two and three, but no information was available for the number of houses in phase four.

A spokesman for Swan Housing could not answer how many homes are earmarked for the last two phases, as they say plans are not that far advanced.

He said: "Swan, Basildon Council and the Homes and Communities Agency continue to be committed to delivering a full redevelopment for the local community."

Loretta’s five-year wait to be re-housed

Southend Standard: Loretta Ellis with children Joseph nine, Shannon, seven, Daniel, five, Mayson 16 months and Olivia 11 weeks

LORETTA Ellis, 28, lives in one of the masionettes in Lincoln Road, and is due to be moved as part of Phase Four.

She said: “When I moved here in 2009 I was told I was to be moved in 2013 and I would have never taken the house if I thought I’d still be here.

“It doesn’t surprise me the council is looking for money for the project, because it is so behind with it.

“I was told I was in Phase Two initially, but the council has now told me I’m in Phase Four and I might not be moved until 2018. There is a big question mark over this.

“It will look ridiculous if half the estate is developed, but the other half still looks like a construction site.

“I’ve held off re-decorating the house. The council also won’t do the ceiling repairs that have been needed since 2009, because the block is supposed to be coming down.”

 

Comments (14)

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9:13am Tue 1 Apr 14

Howard Cháse says...

Ask George Osborne for a handout.
Ask George Osborne for a handout. Howard Cháse
  • Score: 2

9:18am Tue 1 Apr 14

Howard Cháse says...

No houses have been built yet on the old Craylands estate but across the road on the Fryerns school site they have been building a complex of housing units that isn't part of the other recent development between Timberlog Lane roundabout and the footbridge leading from Craylands to The Basildon Academy and the Barstable area.
No houses have been built yet on the old Craylands estate but across the road on the Fryerns school site they have been building a complex of housing units that isn't part of the other recent development between Timberlog Lane roundabout and the footbridge leading from Craylands to The Basildon Academy and the Barstable area. Howard Cháse
  • Score: 3

9:20am Tue 1 Apr 14

Howard Cháse says...

I would suggest that no more new house building in the Basildon area is commenced until the existing projects including Five Links and Craylands aee finished in irder to ensure they are all finished and occupied.
I would suggest that no more new house building in the Basildon area is commenced until the existing projects including Five Links and Craylands aee finished in irder to ensure they are all finished and occupied. Howard Cháse
  • Score: 4

9:52am Tue 1 Apr 14

Howard Cháse says...

If they sold off a third of Lake Meadows Park to housing developers they couldd raise a goodly sum.......
If they sold off a third of Lake Meadows Park to housing developers they couldd raise a goodly sum....... Howard Cháse
  • Score: 3

9:53am Tue 1 Apr 14

janerat3 says...

"we have told the residents the bad news" ,,,,,first I've heard about it !!
"we have told the residents the bad news" ,,,,,first I've heard about it !! janerat3
  • Score: 13

10:22am Tue 1 Apr 14

ThisYear says...

Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding
Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding ThisYear
  • Score: -6

10:33am Tue 1 Apr 14

Howard Cháse says...

It's full steam ahead on the house building elsewhere funnily enough it's only the sixteen year plus redevelopment of Five Links and the latest fiasci at Craylands that seem to be dragging their heels.

Doesn't bode well for the regeneration of Basildon Town Centre....
It's full steam ahead on the house building elsewhere funnily enough it's only the sixteen year plus redevelopment of Five Links and the latest fiasci at Craylands that seem to be dragging their heels. Doesn't bode well for the regeneration of Basildon Town Centre.... Howard Cháse
  • Score: 5

11:30am Tue 1 Apr 14

chief-constable says...

ThisYear wrote:
Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding
Think of the millions they would have had on hand if they hadn't had to spend it enforcing the law of the land on a tiny minority of ne'er-do-wells.
[quote][p][bold]ThisYear[/bold] wrote: Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding[/p][/quote]Think of the millions they would have had on hand if they hadn't had to spend it enforcing the law of the land on a tiny minority of ne'er-do-wells. chief-constable
  • Score: 6

2:10pm Tue 1 Apr 14

ThisYear says...

chief-constable wrote:
ThisYear wrote:
Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding
Think of the millions they would have had on hand if they hadn't had to spend it enforcing the law of the land on a tiny minority of ne'er-do-wells.
Its got nothing to do with ne'er-do-wells" you prize pratt.

It was to do with backhanded deals between 'officials' and developers

People trying to hold onto their homes and land.

Do you think any other people in the exact same situation would just leave?

If so post up an example of people doing just that in the same circumstances.

Proof of the wastage is the way the council is seemingly now offering up green belt land to all comers..after spending millions to 'defend greenbelt land'

Get your mind clear of bigotry and perhaps you will see the lay of the land from brown envelopes..






Id like you to give a link to any person or family that wouldn't contest such a case..
[quote][p][bold]chief-constable[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ThisYear[/bold] wrote: Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding[/p][/quote]Think of the millions they would have had on hand if they hadn't had to spend it enforcing the law of the land on a tiny minority of ne'er-do-wells.[/p][/quote]Its got nothing to do with ne'er-do-wells" you prize pratt. It was to do with backhanded deals between 'officials' and developers People trying to hold onto their homes and land. Do you think any other people in the exact same situation would just leave? If so post up an example of people doing just that in the same circumstances. Proof of the wastage is the way the council is seemingly now offering up green belt land to all comers..after spending millions to 'defend greenbelt land' Get your mind clear of bigotry and perhaps you will see the lay of the land from brown envelopes.. Id like you to give a link to any person or family that wouldn't contest such a case.. ThisYear
  • Score: -3

2:14pm Tue 1 Apr 14

ThisYear says...

chief-constable wrote:
ThisYear wrote:
Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding
Think of the millions they would have had on hand if they hadn't had to spend it enforcing the law of the land on a tiny minority of ne'er-do-wells.
Btw...can you quote why 'law of the land' the council were enforcing?

lets see just how much of a pillock you really are.

*sounds of the idiot 'chief-constable' slithering for the nearest rock*
[quote][p][bold]chief-constable[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ThisYear[/bold] wrote: Think of the money they would've had on hand if they didn't spend millions on evicting people off their own land...but then again.at that time, the developers 'brown envelopes' were raining down like confetti at a triple wedding[/p][/quote]Think of the millions they would have had on hand if they hadn't had to spend it enforcing the law of the land on a tiny minority of ne'er-do-wells.[/p][/quote]Btw...can you quote why 'law of the land' the council were enforcing? lets see just how much of a pillock you really are. *sounds of the idiot 'chief-constable' slithering for the nearest rock* ThisYear
  • Score: -3

4:03pm Tue 1 Apr 14

pembury53 says...

at least with 5 kids she'll be safe from the bedroom tax........
at least with 5 kids she'll be safe from the bedroom tax........ pembury53
  • Score: 1

5:44pm Tue 1 Apr 14

leslog says...

you would think this council would have everything in hand with the government and builders when plans were made for this regeneration project ,this administration do not seem to have a clue,we are still waiting for laindon shopping centre to be rebuilt after years of promises ,and the council wasted money removing gipsys from crays hill only for many to be still parked up outside on an adjacent road,we can only hope people know how to vote when the present administration stand for relection
you would think this council would have everything in hand with the government and builders when plans were made for this regeneration project ,this administration do not seem to have a clue,we are still waiting for laindon shopping centre to be rebuilt after years of promises ,and the council wasted money removing gipsys from crays hill only for many to be still parked up outside on an adjacent road,we can only hope people know how to vote when the present administration stand for relection leslog
  • Score: 4

7:52pm Tue 1 Apr 14

Evilgenius75 says...

As a homeowner on this estate I'd first like to know how according to this article this situation is down to me? I have not been approached by the developers or the council to let me know what is going on with my property, every time I visit the consultation shop I get patronised and given a different time scale and phase for my part of the estate. The only reason I bought the house was on the promise that the area was being greatly improved or I'd be given a good deal on a better house which was the only affordable option for me at the time. Seven years later I feel cheated and resent being blamed for this situation.
As a homeowner on this estate I'd first like to know how according to this article this situation is down to me? I have not been approached by the developers or the council to let me know what is going on with my property, every time I visit the consultation shop I get patronised and given a different time scale and phase for my part of the estate. The only reason I bought the house was on the promise that the area was being greatly improved or I'd be given a good deal on a better house which was the only affordable option for me at the time. Seven years later I feel cheated and resent being blamed for this situation. Evilgenius75
  • Score: 6

3:26pm Fri 4 Apr 14

TheWizzard says...

on the 12th feb phil turner was claiming the development was going into full swing. Perhaps he should of said nose dive
http://www.echo-news
.co.uk/news/11002880
.Craylands_overhaul_
gets_into_full_swing
/
on the 12th feb phil turner was claiming the development was going into full swing. Perhaps he should of said nose dive http://www.echo-news .co.uk/news/11002880 .Craylands_overhaul_ gets_into_full_swing / TheWizzard
  • Score: 0

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