10 February 2020


• Britain’s biggest building society prepares to commence work on 239 new homes
• Society has exercised the option to purchase the brownfield site in Swindon
• Mi-space, part of Midas Group, named as main contractor of £50m Oakfield project
Nationwide Building Society has today made a leap towards building a thriving new community in what it hopes to become a blueprint for non-sector housebuilding.
Britain’s biggest building society has exercised a land option with Swindon Borough Council and appointed Mi-space as the main contractor for the 239-home Oakfield site in Swindon, Wiltshire.  71 of the properties (30%) will be made available as Affordable housing.
Mi-space will join development manager Igloo in creating what is hoped to be a showcase blend of British design, quality and sustainability. Work on the £50 million development is set to begin on site in April, with construction expected to take around three and a half years, with the first homes being launched in the autumn of 2021. 
The Society hopes that the project can be used as a blueprint for other responsible businesses to follow, particularly organisations without experience in housebuilding. 
Since announcing its intentions to build Oakfield at the end of 2017, Nationwide has been in regular dialogue with the local community, businesses and existing community groups to ensure the project meets their expectations and needs. In testament to the level of understanding between the Society and local people, the Society received no objections to the planning application which was approved in July last year. 
Nationwide Building Society’s dedicated Community Organiser has been working in and around Oakfield, finding out what local residents and businesses want from the new development, involving them in the design development. This will continue throughout the process. 
Nationwide has been guided through the development process by impact developer, Igloo – the team behind many of the UK’s acclaimed regeneration projects including The Malings in Newcastle.
Nationwide’s Director of Commercial, Tony Alexander said: “We’ve made important progress today on our plans to develop Oakfield into a thriving community in Swindon. At a time when many are questioning the lack of community, it has perhaps never been more important to invest in society and we want this project to light the fire on the housebuilding debate. We’re looking forward to starting on site later this year.”
Steve Hart, Divisional Director for Mi-space, which is part of the Midas Group, said: “As a business with its roots firmly in the South West we have a deep commitment to the social and economic success of our region and to creating and supporting communities that work well now and in the future. We are proud to be involved in what promises to be an inspirational project and we look forward to working with Nationwide and the local community to maximise the benefits locally during construction as well as delivering a positive and lasting legacy at Oakfield.”

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