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Business & Economy

Law firm Ward Hadaway supports £175 million South Seaham Garden Village project

A Newcastle-based law firm has supported a £175 million County Durham residential and leisure scheme.

Planning lawyers from Ward Hadaway’s built environment team successfully defended a judicial review claim in respect of planning permission for the South Seaham Garden Village project.

The team provided advice during the planning application process and negotiated a substantial Section 106 agreement on behalf of North East contractor Tolent and its subsidiary Coolmore Land Limited.

They also worked closely with Home Group, which is heavily involved in the project.

Developers say the 77.75ha scheme, which will be based near the A19, close to the Dalton Park retail site, will bring 1500 new homes, shops, a café, a new primary school, a park and village square, a community health and wellbeing village, community allotments, and a world-class business innovation and research hub surrounded by extensive green open space.

Working closely with Home Group, Tolent will build around 1000 new homes, of which 750 will be affordable homes.

Land for the remaining 500 homes will be sold on the open market with other national housebuilders likely to become involved.

The ten-year project is expected to be home to some 4000 residents and will create an estimated 1000 jobs. The garden village project is one of 19 schemes announced in the UK and development is expected to start on site this autumn.

Ward Hadaway has had a long-established relationship with Coolmore Land Limited, part of Tolent, having acted for Coolmore since 2009 when it first acquired an interest in the site with a view to future developments.

Melissa Flynn, an associate in Ward Hadaway’s built environment team, said: “This has been a significant project and one which fully demonstrates the range of skills and capabilities of our team.

“Our dedicated planning experts have worked with our client from initial concept, advising on legal matters around the planning, judicial review and Section 106 agreement with colleagues in the wider built environment team also advising on the sale of the site to Home Group and other developers.

“The garden village scheme will significantly boost the local economy, providing quality affordable homes, investment, innovation and jobs.

“We are proud to have assisted Tolent in this significant development project and we look forward to seeing the development come to fruition.”

John Wood, director of Tolent, added: “Receiving garden village status is befitting of such a great development that really will be a national exemplar.

“Our vision to create a truly sustainable community with a mix of distinctive, high-quality housing that improves quality of life is what we’re doing here, as well as creating jobs for the next decade and beyond.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the team at Ward Hadaway for their support.”