Blenheim’s Park View development has been praised by the Rural Housing Alliance for creating affordable housing in the country.

Fifty per cent of the properties on the scheme in Woodstock are affordable homes - made up of affordable rent homes at 40 per cent below market rent and shared ownership homes.

The Rural Housing Alliance, which works with the Rural Services Network and National Housing Federation, is a group of housing associations that develop and manage affordable homes in rural areas.

Jo Lavis, director of Rural Housing Solutions, said: “I was delighted to include Blenheim Estate's Park View development in the Parish Councillors’ Guide to Rural Affordable Housing.

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“It shows what can be achieved when an Estate marries its financial, business and property management expertise with a commitment to providing affordable homes to keep rural communities alive.

“This project is an inspiration and I hope a trailblazer for other large Estates.”

Chair Ursula Bennion added that Blenheim “worked closely with the local authority to identify a suitable site, agreeing the design and Section 106 agreement.

“Underpinning the scheme was extensive community engagement which used a range of techniques to reach and gain the views of all members of the community.”

Blenheim said that before construction it had developed a Community and Infrastructure Delivery Plan, supported by staff from Community First Oxfordshire.

It has also appointed a dedicated part-time community officer working within Woodstock.

“Developments like those we are creating in Woodstock and Long Hanborough have been specifically designed to address the long-term issue of a lack of affordable housing within West Oxfordshire,” said Blenheim property director and COO Roger File.