Demolition of Stirling House begins


Work on Plymouth’s latest service veteran self-build project has taken a significant step forward.

Demolition work has started at Stirling House on Honicknowle Green to make way for a proposed new housing development where over half of the 25 homes will be for service veteran self-builders. There will also be housing for local families.

Following hot-on-the-heels of the celebrated and award winning Nelson Project, Plymouth City Council has again teamed up with partners, LiveWest, Form Design and charity Community Self Build Agency for the proposed homes at Stirling House.

Gilpin Demolition brought their heavy-duty machinery to the site on Monday where representatives from the partners watched on as the grabber got to work.

(l-r): Paul Nicholls, Gilpin Demolition; Michael Hourican, New Business Manager for LiveWest; Councillor Mark Lowry, Cabinet member for Finance; Councillor Chris Penberthy, Cabinet member for Housing; Councillor Pauline Murphy, Armed Forces Covenant Chair; Sandy South, Project Manager for the Community Self Build Agency and Alex South, Operations Director of the Community Self Build Agency.

(l-r): Paul Nicholls, Gilpin Demolition; Michael Hourican, New Business Manager for LiveWest; Councillor Mark Lowry, Cabinet member for Finance; Councillor Chris Penberthy, Cabinet member for Housing; Councillor Pauline Murphy, Armed Forces Covenant Chair; Sandy South, Project Manager for the Community Self Build Agency and Alex South, Operations Director of the Community Self Build Agency.

Councillor Chris Penberthy, Cabinet member for Housing and Cooperative Development, said: “The Nelson Project was an unprecedented success so to see work begin on the next project so soon is very, very exciting.

“We have committed to ensuring that the Nelson Project was not a one off and we’re delighted to be able to start to fulfil that promise.”

Gareth Jones, Development Director at LiveWest, said: “We are pleased to build on the success of the Nelson project by working with partners on the proposals for Stirling House.”

Alex South, Operations Director of the Community Self Build Agency said: “We are pleased to finally have progress and a start to what is another exciting project for all in involved.

“We already have nine veterans being taken through the start of their recovery programme and this defining moment today will add momentum and a sense of belief for all the veterans involved.”

Stirling House is a former residential care home, owned by the Council, which has been empty for several years. In its current form, the building is no longer fit for purpose and so has been earmarked for housing.

The project will also use the land created by the demolition of the nearby disused Honicknowle health clinic, which was purchased by the Council from the NHS earlier this year.

During the build, the ex-servicemen will complete construction courses that will help them develop the skills needed to engage with the project and gain valuable job-based skills, and when the development is complete they will gain a place to call home.