St John's Mews, Brymbo
A small development of just 13No 2 and 3 bedroomed homes in the heart of (old) Brymbo on the high street.
This development sits proudly on the high street of Brymbo, replacing the former school which has been closed since the 1972 (We even had some old pupils returning to visit during construction). We were pleased to be able to use some of the old sandstone to retain the existing wall at the top of the site. The build was not without it’s complications, the demolition process needed to be carried out whilst carefully negotiating the narrow Brymbo high street. Also the considerations we had to take for the local ecology, a state of the art bat house provided by the previous owner for the local bats to hang out. Not to mention there was a change in levels of 7 metres over only 13 houses which meant the scheme required all of Gower Homes’ expertise to provide a quality scheme for the local area.
The site was all raft foundations which is complex enough, rafts with stepped details proved to be even more tricky. The ground conditions also meant we had to improvise with our surface water drainage to provide a good solution. A lot of thought went into retaining wall on the main road, which included a vast amount of steel and concrete, both of which include a rigorous design process. The most difficult part of it though was to design the wall to follow the slope of the road with an entrance outside each front door, it took a lot of head scratching to make the finished product work as well as it has.
Brymbo is an ideal location, it is only a ten minute drive to Wrexham town centre with Mold and Chester within 30 minutes. Brymbo itself is somewhat a hub of sporting activities with the social complex hosting cricket and football clubs. Brymbo Steel Works is iconic as it stands just outside the village centre. Brymbo is also historically a coal mining village on a small scale, before the steel works took off, with the village itself designed as accommodation for the workers.
There was relatively wide range of homes to choose from even with a small development of just 13 homes with 5 different house types. From the 2 bedroomed Kendal to the larger 3 bedroomed detached Beaumaris, all of which have proved to be especially popular with our customers. Nothing sets the development off better than the street view showing the dramatic slope, framed by a spectacular Copper Beach at the top of the high street, together with the other beautiful mature trees in the cemetery adjacent to the site. Once inside the hub of the site itself, the change in elevation is most dramatic of all, set off with some stunning views across Wrexham and the Cheshire Plains.
Packsaddle Bank, Pentrebychan
Packsaddle Bank is a small scheme of just 11 outstanding detached family homes in a semi rural location convenient for Wrexham and Llangollen.
The stunning view of the houses raised from the main road sets this development off magnificently as Gower Homes is able to show off a fantastic new range of house types designed for this site to be carried forward. In the 1930/40s Packsaddle Bank (House) was the Water Company Manager’s House who was deemed important enough to have his own air raid shelter, which was demolished along with the house. There are some stunning trees which were kept for the development with the best Beech, Cedar and Scots Pine retained.
There is a significant change in elevation from the rear of the site to the main road which is especially apparent coming up through the development. This made the build itself a complex process with raft foundations on the upper part of the site and strip foundations on the lower part. For this development there was a return to masonry construction, all of our other sites since 2010 have been timber frame.
The development is surrounded by the great outdoors, with a natural meadow immediately backing onto the site. Nant Mill, Hafod Woodland and Erddig National Park are all within a 5 minute drive. There are also great links to Llangollen with a regular bus service almost immediately opposite the entrance.
Packsaddle Bank proved to be immensely popular with a new range of purchasers looking to move in to family homes. It marked a return to detached homes with a site of 3 and predominantly 4 bedroomed houses. The house types have had a slight revamp from what has been built in the past, the new range of houses are the Powis, Chirk, Harlech, Rhuddlan, Conwy and Beaumaris which serve as outstanding properties.
Walnut Court, Stansty Road, Wrexham LL11 2BU
Walnut Court was a brownfield site of 24nr 2 and 3 bedroomed homes.
Despite the surrounding area being developed with railway lines, light industrial use and steady expansion of residential use in Rhosddu, the site itself was largely undeveloped until the building of a GPO building in the 60's. More recently it served as a car park for the nearby Gym but lay derelict for a number of years through the recession and credit crunch.
The difficulties with this site lay in developing the site with some quite involved infrastructure works, on a busy junction, and maintaining through access to the now reopened gym, which was achieved without complaint or issue. This is a testimony to the Gower Homes considerate approach when developing sites.
As a location for starter homes, this site is ideal, with town centre, schools, colleges, university, new retail development, hospital all within comfortable walking distance. Sporting interests are also catered for with gym, Wrexham Football ground, University sports facilities and tennis centre also within a stone's throw. The Wrexham train station has links to all major destinations, with convenient access to the A483 and bus stop immediately adjacent to the site.
The homes themselves are from the Gower Homes tried and tested range that have proved popular and comfortable for many satisfied customers over the last 30yrs. Ranging from 2 bedroomed Kendal terraced/end terraced houses to the 3 bedroomed Durham Hampton semi-detached homes.
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Burton Rise, Acrefair, Wrexham LL14 3SE
Burton Rise was a brownfield site comprising of 7Nr 2 and 3 bedroom homes.
This development was phase 2 of the successful Orchard Rise site, and now nestles very comfortably in it's surroundings, and betraying the previous industrial heritage of this site and locality. Compare the photograph below showing the railway bridge and line that towered above the road, crossing at this point, with the pleasant surroundings of a landscaped bank and small areas of woodland flanking 3 sides.
Burton Rise is surrounded by great places of cultural, historic and leisure interests, including Froncysyllte aquaduct, Llangollen, with working steam trains & Eisteddfod Royal International Pavillion, and some fantastic scenery in the hills of Panorama and The Berwyn's
The homes themselves include The Kendal and Durham, two of Gower Homes' most successful cost effective 2 and 3 bedroomed homes. Ideal starter homes with parking serving the village of Acrefair well, and transforming a previously derelict brownfield site.
Every Gower Home has been delivered by a core team of staff who have been with the company for many years, some since the company's formation 27 years ago.
Burton Rise is Gower Homes' 10th consecutive brownfield site development and yet another testimony of how we have worked in partnership with the Wrexham CBC, Denbighshire and Flintshire has contributed to Urban Regeneration within the region and won the LABC awards for quality in 2017.
Working closely with the Local Authority, Gower Homes obtained planning permission back in 2010 but for viability reasons delayed the development until 2015/2016. The biggest challenge was the excavation and disposal of over 10,000 ton of redundant Llangollen to Wrexham railway embankment to achieve a sensible site level. In addition, the ground conditions dictated raft foundations and time was wasted in the search for a non-existent mineshaft.
Burton Rise has proved very popular with local first time buyers, and these same housetypes continue to serve the company well on other sites.
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The Sidings, off Railway Road, Stansty, Wrexham LL11 2DN
The Sidings, off Stansty Road Wrexham was a brownfield site of 48 Number 1,2 and 3 bedroomed houses which proved very popular with first time buyers and investors. This redundant brownfield site was previously old railway sidings until the 1960's, and more recently home to the local Remploy factory who moved out in 2012. We then purchased the site and obtained planning early in 2014 and were on site in the Spring.
There was huge demand for the houses and we sold the first twenty houses off plan pre construction commencement.
In partnership with Grwp Cynefin Housing Association and Wrexham Council, we delivered 12 affordable homes which proved very popular with local people. The local councillor was very supportive of our scheme generally and took a particular interest in the affordable houses and the children's playground that we built on site. We forged strong links with the local community, including a partnership with Rhosddu Junior Football Club by way of our shirt sponsorship.
The Sidings was a terrific site for us and construction was completed in Spring 2016. We enjoyed the sidings so much that we purchased the site just 100mm across the road - the northern part ot the Total Fitness Gym car park, which we have renamed Walnut Court which is featured in our current development section.
Westminster Rise – Summerhill, LL11 4QE
Westminster Rise, off Celtic Road, Summerhill was a small select brownfield development of just 24 starter and family homes. Westminster Rise was a fascinating site in many ways; there were a number of technical hurdles to overcome including excavating rock to form the foundations, the capping of a mineshaft (there are many throughout Wrexham), and the demolition of a ventilation shaft 2.0m in diameter, of a depth of 4.0m below ground level that ran across the site which used to ventilate the number 1 shaft of the Westminster Colliery.
Westminster Rise was one of the many victims of the banking crisis/credit crunch, we did want to start this development in 2008, but due to our banks withdrawing support we were unable to start until 2012. This site proved very popular and was completed in 2013.
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Greenbank Court - Wrexham, LL13 8DX
Greenbank Court is an urban scheme on the edge of Wrexham Town Centre conveniently located within a short walk of the very impressive Eagles Meadow Retail Development. Greenbank Court is another brownfield site, formerly an old gas works site now transformed into thirty one 1, 2, 3 & 4 bedroomed town houses all with generous gardens.
Greenbank Court sold out in a matter of months and was extremely popular with both owner occupiers and investors, many of whom having bought from us previously.
In partnership with Wales & West Housing Association and Tai Clwyd Housing Association 8 of the properties were affordable homes for rent, which enabled 8 local families to access new rental properties which otherwise would have been out of their reach.
This site was completed in Spring 2012.
Orchard Rise – Acrefair, LL14 35E
Orchard Rise is located just off Llangollen Road, Acrefair, near Llangollen. It comprises of twenty traditional 3-4 bedroom family houses using our most popular designs and was recently completed in the spring of 2011. Orchard rise is located on land purchased from the Wrexham Council which used to be part of the Acrefair CP school site and immediately to the rear of the site is the old trackbed of the Llangollen to Wrexham Railway which was dismantled in the 1970s.