Bristol’s Deputy Mayor, Councillor Craig Cheney, has this week visited the new Chocolate Factory development in Bristol to understand how the scheme has transformed an iconic part of the city’s history and improved availability and affordability of homes in the area.
The Chocolate Factory in Greenbank is currently under development by Generator South West. The mixed-use scheme, when complete, will comprise 138 residential units along with circa 15,000 square feet of commercial space. Generator South West agreed to develop 28 of the 1 and 2 bedroom apartments and forward sell them to Abri for them to offer to purchasers under their shared ownership scheme. The first of the shared ownership properties sold out in a matter of weeks going on sale in November 2021.
Councillor Cheney was accompanied by Paul Isaacs, Founder and Managing Director of Generator South West and Stuart Hensby, Associate Director of Sales & Marketing, Abri. His visit comes at a time when demand for housing in Bristol has reached unprecedented levels, and affordability remains an issue.
Councillor Cheney looked at the history of the chocolate making on the site at the former Elizabeth Shaw Factory and critically how this important part of Bristol’s history had been sympathetically retained in the site’s redevelopment.
The group then walked to Kernal Point, Co-Operation Road which was handed over to Abri in Autumn last year and onto Kibbling House to see the Shared Ownership homes that have been created out of the former factory buildings, which has just been shortlisted in the First Time Buyer Awards for ‘Best Apartment for First Time Buyers’.
Speaking about the visit, Councillor Craig Cheney said, “Building homes and developing communities remains one of Bristol City Council’s priorities and I am pleased to see that this site has paid tribute to the historic factory that has stood here for many years.
“We are committed to delivering affordable homes across the city. It’s therefore excellent to see more accommodation, through accessible schemes such as Shared Ownership, coming to market in the heart of Bristol.”
The development boasts 28 one- and two-bedroom Shared Ownership apartments as well as 110 private sale homes comprising both houses and apartments. Once complete, the scheme will also include a community hub based around the new public open square, together with retail, café/bar and workspace units and open up direct access to the Bristol & Bath Railway Path.
Stuart Hensby, Associate Director of Sales & Marketing, Abri said, “It has been great working with Generator South West to revitalise this disused land and create a thriving new community in Bristol. On our part, Abri is committed to building at least 12,500 new homes by 2030 to help address the unmet need for housing.”
He added, “There’s regeneration happening at every turn of a corner in the city. New, stylish developments are coming forward, community spaces are being transformed and the idea of being part of this scene is appealing to more and more people. The old Elizabeth Shaw factory is a real part of Bristol’s history and the new homes – as well as the café, bar and community space – have breathed exciting new life into it”.
Paul Isaacs, Founder and Managing Director, Generator South West said, “We are delighted to have been the catalyst developer breathing new life into this famous old factory which is once again becoming the focus of the local Greenbank community. Our desire and commitment to provide 28 affordable housing units for people that would have otherwise found it difficult to be able to buy in the area is a source of real satisfaction, particularly when the planning consent we received had no requirement for any affordable housing.
“Abri have been an excellent partner to work with and together we have delivered homes for people who will be able to enjoy all of the great benefits that Greenbank and The Chocolate Factory have to offer.’’