A time capsule filled with mementos from local community groups, organisations and schools has been buried in celebration to mark a project to deliver 40 new affordable homes in north Manchester.
The new home build began earlier this year in partnership with Willmott Dixon across six sites in Moston and Harpurhey – representing the first Council housing built for five years due to a lack of access to home building funding.
The properties will be available for affordable rent, managed by Northwards Housing.
The time capsule burial coincided with a Family Fun Day at the community garden next to the Tarvington Close site in Collyhurst, where the capsule will be placed for 50 years before being unearthed by future generations.
Inside, local groups and schools have placed a range of familiar items that represent their interests, the local area, and the time and place the capsule was buried.
Some of the groups involve include the Irk Valley Tenants’ & Residents’ Association, Church of the Saviour Primary Schools, and St Malachys’ RC Primary schools who have pooled items to be included in the capsule.
The capsule will include various pictures of north Manchester over the last decade, pictures of the north Manchester over the last decade, newspaper cuttings and magazines clipping celebrating successes of local people.
One child included a plastic straw - a comment on the move away from unrecyclable plastics - and another included a current pound coin. Both items will show how much Manchester will have changed before the capsule is dug up in 2068.
The 40 properties have been built with help from a £1.4m grant from the Homes England Affordable Homes Programme.
The first completions are expected in October, with the final builds due to complete in November.
The North Manchester New Build homes project has also been complemented by a concurrent scheme at the Booth Hall site in Charlestown.
The scheme has seen the City Council acquire 20 high quality new build properties are from developer Taylor Wimpey through a section 106 agreement that will be sold as shared ownership opportunities, affordable to Manchester people by the city’s own affordability criteria. The properties are available now.
Since 2011/12 there was 2,124 affordable homes built in Manchester – 1,714 of these were social rent.
There are 2,235 affordable homes in the pipeline up to 2020/21 – 996 of these are social homes. This total will be added to as new home building opportunities come online.
Cllr Suzanne Richards, Manchester City Council’s executive member for housing and regeneration, said: “We are reaching an exciting stage in this project where the homes have been raised out of the ground and we can see how the homes will fit into the local community and how they add to the neighbourhoods.
“We know these 40 homes are much anticipated in the area and we look forward to their completion later this year.
“For now, this time capsule will long help us remember the hard work that has gone into making this project a reality and I can’t help but think forward in time to the lucky people who will eventually dig it up and get a glimpse of their community in 2018.”
Sue Abbott, chair of the board at Northwards Housing who will be managing the new homes, said: “This really is history in the making and I’m delighted that tenants and residents have been able to get involved in filling the time capsule.
“The much-needed homes will bring benefits for many years to come and it’s great to think that those same people will one day reopen this capsule and will be able to appreciate what life was like as the homes were taking shape.”
Stuart Belfield, Operations Director at Willmott Dixon, said: “I can think of no better legacy to showcase to those who open this time capsule in 50 years, than the inspiring positivity and community spirit of this neighbourhood. Willmott Dixon is focussed on helping to raise the aspirations and opportunities available to this community, providing a range of jobs and training on our sites, and we are delighted to play our part in constructing these, highly-anticipated homes."
The six sites for the 40 affordable rent units are:
Tarvington Close, Cheetham
Barnstaple Drive, Cheetham
Faversham Street, Moston
Hugo Street, Rodenhurst Drive, Moston
Douglas Street, Harpurhey
Rudd Street, Harpurhey