New scheme puts off-site construction back on the map for UK house building

Work is underway on a new housing development in Tameside which marks the return of off-site house building in the UK.

Factory Homes, the off-site construction specialist, has been working with New Charter Homes and developer Bowsall on the pioneering Boundary Close scheme in Mossley, East Manchester.

The development saw properties built at the company’s manufacturing facility in Hull, before they were transported to the site by lorry and lifted into place by a 75ft, 90 tonne crane.

Building homes off-site is an increasingly attractive proposition for Registered Providers and house builders, and allows for quicker and more cost effective construction – with guaranteed delivery times and no need to rely on the British weather.  

The three bungalows and four semi-detached houses were built by Factory Homes in just 45 days, and thanks to the controlled building environment the timber-framed properties were completed to high eco standards with excellent air-tightness and BREEAM ratings. 

The scheme was funded with support from the Homes and Communities Agency, and is part of a pilot project to explore new ways of building more affordable homes in Britain.

The development comes following calls from Housing Minister Mark Prisk for the use of more innovative techniques when building homes.  

Chris Hyde, Commercial Manager at Factory Homes, said he believed off-site developments like this have an important part to play in the future of UK house building.

“The Government is calling for a new and innovative approach to house building, and this scheme with New Charter Homes and Bowsall offers a genuine alternative to current building techniques used in the UK,” he said.

“Our off-site construction offers quality and flexibility, while also cutting the time it takes to build a property in half – allowing landlords and developers to build more homes, at a faster rate and at a lower cost.

“We are certain that this development will lead the way for other similar schemes across the country and help bridge the housing gap in these uncertain times.”

The new properties at the Boundary Close will replace a former ‘Homes for Heroes’ development built after World War Two, and will be owned and managed by New Charter Homes.

Sean Stafford, New Charter’s Director of Development, said: “We’ve been working with carefully chosen partners on the pilot scheme with the idea that if it successful, we could supply more homes in this way.

“Affordable housing is in high demand and as the homes have been pre-built under factory conditions, they are not subject to the extreme weather conditions which can sometimes with regret delay our building programmes.”

For more information about off-site development techniques contact Factory Homes on 01482 713 826 or visit