New homes proposed in Woolwich and Abbey Wood from Meridian Home Start

Greenwich Council look set to transfer three areas of land to their arms-length property company Meridian Home Start.

A cabinet meeting next week is set to give the green light for transferring one site is in Woolwich on Artillery Place while two are in Abbey Wood; land that was formerly part of Abbey Wood school and at garages along Sewell Road.

The Artillery Place site has long been listed on part of Greenwich Council’s website dedicated to housebuilding.

Courtesy Google. 2009 image shows former school before demolition. Area on right designated for sale

A Council report states that the “front elevation facing directly onto the public highway and an area of hard standing to the rear approximately was constructed in the 1950’s and its last use was as a commercial unit used by a nursery with a range of rooms and facilities which include kitchens, toilets and bath facilities”.

Abbey Wood

As for the sites in Abbey Wood, the school site on Penmon Road has been vacant for nearing 15 years now. Could well be getting on for 20 now since Abbey Wood school was closed.

Thinking back it may have been part of a larger staff car park before the school was demolished. St Paul’s was built on the site with main buildings shifted to the other end of the large plot leaving an overgrown wasteland ever since.

The garages along Sewell Road were mentioned as being a possible site for homes as part of a strategy drawn up for Abbey Wood way back in 2009 (see page 37).

Sewell Road runs alongside Southern outfall sewer

This report seeks to use two sections for housing.


Since being established 13 years ago Meridian Home Start have so far completed 133 homes.

They offer homes not at social rent levels but at an average of 65 per cent market rates. Arms-length council companies can generate a surplus for councils to reinvest.

One rather odd element is the authority stating in the report that “The Council wishes to utilise MHS’s expertise and track record in delivering affordable housing to design and obtain planning permission for these sites on behalf of the Council.”

Of course, with Greenwich Builds they’ve shown they can do this themselves for building homes at true social housing level at many sites in recent years. It doesn’t offer that option.

Greenwich Council’s Cabinet will decide at a meeting next week. An agreement with Meridian Home Strat would see up to £600,000 (excluding VAT) in public funding.



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I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

3 thoughts on “New homes proposed in Woolwich and Abbey Wood from Meridian Home Start

  • It’s a good idea to build house’s on the old abbey wood comprehensive school, I’ve thought for years it’s a shame that nothing was done with the site, but for the life of me I don’t understand why the council doesn’t use Greenwich builds to build the house’s to really help people on the housing waiting list. It will be interesting to see plans for the house’s in Sewell rd to see which way they will face, also the fact the main sewer runs all the way down the side of the site
    Steve Norris

  • I believe the building on Artillery Place was once used by The Simba Project. I guess this building will be flats. Will be interesting to see what homes will be built on Sewell Road and the site of the old Abbey Wood School. What is beyond me is how the site can be left empty for 15 to 20 years. When new homes could have been provided years ago.
    I agree witb Steve Norris Greewich Build could build the homes to provide social housing for local residents..

  • Councils are not interested in helping those on the waiting list or the low paid. It’s all about planning consent and the neutering of s106 in exchange for money and council tax revenue.


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