Independent housebuilder Dandara has launched its latest new division to cover South, West and East Wales – and has pledged to work closely with the Welsh Government and Housing Associations to help meet its ambitious target of 20,000 new social homes over the next five years.
Heading up Dandara’s newest region, as the housebuilder continues to expand, is former Persimmon boss, Martin Smith, who comes from Pontypridd. Previously MD of Persimmon Homes in East Wales, Martin is well versed in the unique challenges of the housing market in this part of the UK and understands the opportunities available.
“Providing good quality homes for everyone is at the heart of the Welsh Government’s plans for the future, with an ambitious social housing drive that will see developers required to provide 50% affordable homes on their sites,” says Martin Smith. “We are going to be working alongside key stakeholders, forging new partnerships, relationships and working with the planning authorities to help meet the demand for sustainable, quality housing, for both our private and HA customers”
Martin was drawn to Dandara, after eight years in his previous role, because he was impressed by the proactive nature of the housebuilder as well as its commitment to building quality homes. Dandara also launched a new Eastern division in the summer, and has also expanded rapidly throughout Eastern Scotland.
“This is a really exciting opportunity to put together and lead a strong and capable team to help meet the considerable housing needs of South Wales, whilst continuing to do what Dandara does best – building high quality homes.” he says.
The Wales & West division, which has its headquarters in the Cardiff Gate Business Park, will have a strong focus on creating local jobs. The management team are mainly drawn from the local area, including Land and Planning Director Daryl Jones, Commercial Director Jason Martin and Technical Manager Craig Weymouth, and it’s estimated that in the coming year the division’s operations will bring thousands of new jobs to the region.
He continues: “We aim where possible to use local staff, local sub-contractors and locally sourced materials to ensure a sustainable business that supports the Welsh economy,” says Martin.
Dandara Wales & West has already invested in several major sites that are ready to begin construction in the coming year, with an estimated £16 million portfolio of projects in the pipeline set to bring more than 2,000 new homes to the area. The first project to begin will be Sant Silian, a development of 150 new two-, three- and four-bedroom homes on the outskirts of Cardiff, situated close to Old St Mellons and Lisvane, just off junction 30 of the M4. This 8.5-acre site will offer a superbly convenient location for Cardiff commuters.
Dandara Wales & West also plans to start construction of 140 homes, many with sweeping views over the Carmarthen Bay, overlooking one of the few racecourses in the country at Ffos Las, close to Llanelli. Part of a larger ongoing development, Dandara’s homes at Golwg Gwendraeth, Ffos Las will have easy access to beautiful walks along the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path as well as the wealth of social activities at the popular racecourse.
“We already have some very exciting plans in the pipeline,” says Martin. “We will be exploring the use of modern methods of construction to lower the carbon footprint of our new homes, with the aim of achieving net zero, while ensuring that every home we build meets Welsh space and quality standards to ensure warm, comfortable, eco-friendly and adaptable living spaces.
“Our new Wales & West region will enable us to work closely with the authorities to provide the homes that the local economy here needs – quality private properties alongside social, affordable homes that invest in the future of local communities.
“I’m excited to take on this new role and to be working with such a great team – many of whom I have worked with in the past. Dandara recently achieved a five-star rating in the Home Builders Federation Customer Satisfaction Survey – the first year we have entered – which confirms the value that we place as a company on getting things right first time. I’m looking forward to introducing the people of South Wales to our company and delivering new homes to meet the housing needs of the area.”
For more information about Dandara Wales & West visit www.dandara.com