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Saturday, 30 May 2015

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Scores of new Barrow homes planned as firm lands ex-school sites

MORE than 100 new Barrow homes are expected to be built on three former school sites.

Following the £22.5m investment into a new-build Furness Academy off Park Drive in Barrow, Cumbria County Council sold three prime pieces of land – one at the former Parkview site next to the new school, and two in Thorncliffe Road which made up Thorncliffe School.

The Evening Mail can now reveal that all three sites, which sold for a combined total of £1.7m, have been bought by Blackburn-based Mullberry Homes.

The firm, set up by Derek Barnes in 1980 under the name Paddle Homes, is believed to be planning to build around 114 houses across the sites, with 50 expected to be built at the Thorncliffe site and 64 at Parkview.

Last July Paddle Homes and Mr Barnes, then 75, were prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive for a “blatant disregard” for safety on building sites following a number of incidents. At the time, the regulator said Paddle Homes had “a lengthy history of HSE enforcement action”.

Mr Barnes, of Old Hall Lane, Pleasington, pleaded guilty to safety breaches and was given an eight-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, ordered to pay £43,000 and disqualified from being a company director for three years.

When the Evening Mail asked Mullberry Homes about the HSE prosecution, a spokesman said Mr Barnes was no longer involved in the running of the company and was retired.

The spokesman said the new houses off Park Drive are likely to be priced between £222,500 and £450,000 and said they would be “the best houses that have ever been built in Barrow”.

The properties will have four, five or six-bedrooms and some are expected to have double garages. Demolition work has already begun on the former school buildings.

Mullberry Homes and Paddle Homes have been behind a number of other developments in the area, including the seven-house development on the site of the former George Hotel on Walney. A planning application has been submitted to Barrow Borough Council for the Parkview development but it yet to be validated.

The spokesman for Mullberry Homes said the company was not yet in a position to go into any detail about its plans for the Thorncliffe site.

Have your say

Should be building new council houses.

Posted by b on 30 June 2014 at 20:23

Hannah, I am far from a snob. I'm earlier 30's and have worked very hard to gain good qualifications leading to a professional career. I think it's your attitude which is sadly very common in this town. Where anyone who is successful or wants the finer things in life is defined a snob. Whether that is nice bars, restaurants, furniture, homes. If barrow wishes to attract high calibre professionals it needs to offer the homes and amenities to support this community.

Posted by Steve on 30 June 2014 at 19:11

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