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Government approves first wave of new garden villages

The first wave of garden villages planned to create tens of thousands of new homes in England has been given the go-ahead.

Ministers have backed 14 bids across the country that will develop new communities with between 1,500 and 10,000 properties.

Larger scale garden towns in Aylesbury, Bucks, Taunton in Somerset and Harlow and Gilston, on the Essex-Herts border, have also been signed off by the Government.

The plans are expected to create a series of new communities with green spaces, good transport links and high quality affordable homes to help tackle the country's housing crisis.

Some £6 million in funding will go towards developing the new villages, which could generate 48,000 new homes, while £1.4 million has been earmarked for the towns.

Combined with seven garden towns and cities already announced, the initiative has the potential to deliver 200,000 properties, the Government said.

Homes are already being built in Aylesbury, Taunton, Bicester and Didcot in Oxfordshire, Basingstoke in Hampshire, Ebbsfleet in Kent, and north Northamptonshire.

Housing minister Gavin Barwell said: "Locally led garden towns and villages have enormous potential to deliver the homes that communities need.

"New communities not only deliver homes, they also bring new jobs and facilities and a big boost to local economies. These places combined could provide almost 200,000 homes."

The new villages are Long Marston in Stratford-on-Avon; Oxfordshire Cotswold in west Oxfordshire; Deenethorpe in east Northamptonshire; Culm in Mid Devon; Welborne near Fareham in Hampshire; West Carclaze in Cornwall; Dunton Hills near Brentwood, Essex; Spitalgate Heath in South Kesteven District, Lincolnshire; Halsnead in Knowsley, Merseyside; Longcross in Runnymede and Surrey Heath; Bailrigg in Lancaster; Infinity Garden Village in south Derbyshire; St Cuthberts near Carlisle; and North Cheshire in Cheshire East.

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