Government pumps £30m into Yorkshire modular housing industry

Construction corridor
Dave Sheridan, Executive Chairman at ilke Homes

Yorkshire is to get a £30m cash injection from government to create carbon-free homes and new jobs in a ‘construction corridor’ running the width of the country.

The money will be given to firms like Knaresborough-based ilke Homes to, it is said, turbo-charge production at its North Yorkshire factory.

By next year, 2,000 modular homes will roll off ilke Homes’ production line, rising to 5,000 homes a year within the next five years – making it a top 10 UK housebuilder.

Because ilke Homes’ factory manufactures homes using precision engineering, they are more energy efficient than traditional homes, halving energy costs compared to the average UK property – creating housing that’s good for the planet and good for the pocket.

A factory environment also allows ilke Homes to ensure a high-level of quality and consistency is guaranteed for investors, developers and residents.

The result is homes that outperform those built traditionally, with ilke’s homes proven to be 100% more energy efficient than the average UK home. The investment from government housing agency Homes England will help drive these improvements further by allowing ilke Homes to scale up its operation.

Housing Minister Esther McVey MP said: “The North of England has the potential to lead the world in the modern methods of construction that are transforming home building. An industry that when matured would be worth £40 billion a year and provide up to 80,000 jobs. We need to fully embrace this.

“This £30m investment in ilke Homes is a significant step forwards in the development of the ‘Construction Corridor’ – a new hub in the North that is front and centre of building the homes we need.

“It’s vital we invest in new technology to get Britain building. Homes built using modern methods can be of higher quality, greener and built to last.”

Today’s investment builds on an announcement last week by Ms McVey that government wants to create a centre of excellence in the north for Modern Methods of Construction to help speed-up house building to meet its target of 300,000 new homes being delivered each year by the mid-2020s.

Modern methods of construction are a combination of offsite manufacturing and onsite techniques that provide alternatives to traditional house building, allowing homes to be built quickly, be more energy efficient and better designed. It can deliver high-quality housing at pace. By manufacturing offsite, the precision-engineered homes produced by ilke Homes are delivered twice as fast as traditional methods of construction – while creating 90% less waste.

Dave Sheridan, Executive Chairman at ilke Homes, said: “This deal is testament to the dynamic approach Homes England is taking to address structural issues within our housing and construction industries.

“The funding will bring in further private capital, creating hundreds more skilled jobs allowing us to build more homes more quickly for first-time buyers.

“We want to continue driving efficiency, quality and sustainability within the housebuilding industry and see this as a fantastic signal to others wishing to do the same.”

The £30 million is being allocated from the Home Building Fund, a £4.5 billion fund delivered by government housing agency Homes England.