Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Stone Edge housing scheme 'an eyesore'

An unfinished £27m housing scheme in Sheffield has been branded an "eyesore" by nearby residents.

The developers of the Stone Edge scheme at Fox Hill went into administration in December.

Artisan H Ltd built six out of 179 proposed homes, with 23 part-completed.

Sheffield City Council has now said another developer is interested in finishing the scheme, but did not want to build the flat-roofed houses that were originally planned.

The development was initially proposed as a £27m scheme designed by Dutch architecture firm, Meccanoo.

Derek Martin, the council's director of housing, regeneration and enterprise, said the council had decided Stone Edge was the best scheme for the area in 2007.

'Like Beirut'

It entered into a lease with the developer after a public consultation and work started on the three playing field-sized plots in 2008.

About 50 homes were expected to be finished by December 2011, but the developer went into administration.

Residents said they were left with the land "looking like Beirut" with weeds, boarded-up windows and metal security fencing.

Local resident Carol Crookes said: "It looks like what it is, a derelict building site. It's just horrendous. It's just an eyesore surrounded by metal fencing."

Ms Crookes said it had been "futile" trying to sell her house for the past two years, with the view of the derelict land across the road.

Image caption Only six of the planned 179 flat-roof houses at Stone Edge in Fox Hill have been finished

Mr Martin admitted the land was "a bit of a mess" but he said that rather than taking back the land, the council wanted administrators KPMG to find a new developer.

"Quality homes are much-needed in that part of the city," Mr Martin said.

The money for the scheme had mostly come from the private sector but none had come from Sheffield Council, Mr Martin said.

About £1.8m of the money came from the government's Homes and Communities Agency.

Mr Martin said the earliest that work was likely to restart was in six to eight months, once a new developer was confirmed.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites