Construction has now officially started on a new housing estate in Widnes.

Planning approval was granted for 99 homes off South Lane in July last year. Branded Abbey Vale, the new Prospect Homes estate will feature properties ranging in size from two to four bedrooms.

The 8.6 acre site was acquired from landowner Stephen Brookes, whose family have lived there since the 1860s.

He said: “When we came to the decision to sell our home, we were approached by numerous house builders. Prospect stood out to us because of their ‘Homes for Good’ ethos and we liked the idea that profits from the sale of homes at Abbey Vale will be reinvested into social housing in the area.”

Michael Orgill, managing director of Prospect Homes, said: “It’s a real milestone moment for Prospect Homes to see work start on this site.

"It was also lovely to be joined by Stephen, whose family has lived at Abbey Farm since the 1860s.

"The new community that we are building is bringing much-needed homes to the area and we’re pleased that we can deliver this."

The site was identified in the Halton Delivery and Allocations Local Plan as land for residential development and the 99 homes will contribute towards the council’s target of delivering 8,050 homes by 2037.

The company said it will invest more than £600,000 into the local community and, because they are part of Riverside Group, one of the UK’s leading social housing and regeneration organisation, all profits will go towards helping others.

Mr Orgill added: “Widnes has been an area we have sought to build in for a while.  The location of Abbey Vale with its lovely outlook, amenities and transport links, is going to be a really great place to call home.”

The first homes at Abbey Vale are expected to be released for sale in summer 2024 with show homes planned to open in the autumn.