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100 Years of Council Housing in Winchester District

Winchester City Council is marking the 100th anniversary of the first houses built on the council’s flagship Stanmore estate, with the planned completion of more than 70 new properties at The Valley.

The development will provide 77 new affordable homes, with a mix of one, two, and three-bedroom flats; two and three-bedroom houses; and a three-bedroom bungalow. The new development is low carbon and energy-efficient and solar panels and electric vehicle charging points have been included across the development.

In November 1923, the Prince of Wales, who later became the future King Edward VIII, formally opened the future Stanmore development planting a tree to mark the occasion.

The first properties to be built were in Cromwell Road and Princes Place, with additional dwellings added to the estate over time. The cost of a two-bed varied from 11s 6d (58p) and 15s 3d (78p) for a three-bed property, which was expensive at the time but prices were reduced a year later when the Poor Laws introduced affordable housing in 1921.

Hampshire Advertiser published an article on 12th June 1920, writing that the housing plans would be ‘the most sought after in Winchester’ because they were beautifully placed. Development plans for Stanmore were shown at the Wembley Exhibition in 1922.

The properties were designed to be progressive and modern, with bathrooms having both hot and cold water. The ground floors were finished with a lino-like substance on concrete, which was popular during this time. Winchester City Council used the natural hilly shape of the area, to create a visually pleasing and economic design of a combination of curved roads and cul-de-sacs to give a ‘village’ feeling within the city.

A century on, the estate continues to grow in a modern and eco-friendly way, as the council breathes new life into the flagship estate with a mix of fantastic shared ownership and social rent flats and houses.

Cllr Kelsie Learney, Cabinet Member for Housing and Asset Management, said: 

"Stanmore estate is soon to celebrate its 100th anniversary, so I'm thrilled that at this point of reflection we’re able to look forward to The Valley development providing much-needed homes for local families and individuals. Winchester City Council has continued its commitment to high quality, modern designed housing continues to this day. Stanmore estate has offered well-designed, affordable housing for a century now, and these additional properties will see more residents move into the economical suburb.”

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