A Morpeth-based development company is confident about growing its presence in Northumberland as it believes it is filling an important niche in the housing market.
Altoria Development was established in 2014 by Morpeth residents Alan and Victoria Fleming.
The married couple decided the time was right for them to move on from working in the training department for Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service and start their own business, with Mr Fleming having experience of working in the building trade.
Its primary focus is on providing rare and executive new-build bungalows and after receiving planning permission, work started to build eight of these properties at The Furrows in Stannington Station in April 2016.
October 2016 was when people moved into the first home and the final bungalow built was occupied in September last year.
This was phase one and phase two will involve building a further six bungalows on the same site.
The application for phase two received planning permission at a meeting of Northumberland County Council’s Castle Morpeth Local Area Council last week.
Mrs Fleming’s speech at the Castle Morpeth Local Area Council meeting included the following: “We chose this site as it is located on the edge of a built-up area in a sustainable location that is served by existing facilities, services and public transport.
“There are no outstanding objections from consultees – all issues surrounding drainage have been addressed – and the application is compliant with green-belt policy.”
Karen Carins, chairman of Stannington Parish Council, also spoke in favour of the scheme and the application was unanimously approved by the county councillors.
Mrs Fleming said afterwards: “We decided to focus on bungalows as this meant we would be providing a niche in the market that wasn’t being offered elsewhere.
“As soon as we saw the site in Stannington Station, we knew it was the right site for this type of property.
“It has been a huge learning curve, but we’re incredibly proud of what has been created at The Furrows. We’re now looking forward to phase two and other potential sites for bungalow development are being assessed.
“Being a private developer has enabled us to provide a personal touch and each client was able to design the interior of their new home alongside our architect.”
Altoria Development recently added two new members to the team. Tony Carter, formerly a planning officer at the county council, has joined as principal consultant for planning and he can advise individuals who want to submit a planning application.
Garry Featherstone, a qualified surveyor, has joined as principal consultant for construction.
People can meet the team, ask them questions and pick up a brochure for phase two of The Furrows at an open day session in Morpeth Town Hall tomorrow (Saturday) from 10am to 3pm.
“The number of people over 65 in Northumberland will continue to grow over the next 25 years and so the demand for bungalows in the county will certainly be there,” said Mr Fleming.