Apache Capital’s single-family housing platform Present Made acquires second site in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc from Valorem Investment Partners

·       New sustainable housing development targeting a net zero operational carbon model will see 650 precision engineered smart homes delivered  

·       The £215m scheme is Present Made’s second site in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc and will help meet a pressing housing need

·       Residents will have access to a range of amenities as well as a new 87-acre country park, with a new primary school built on-site too

Present Made, the UK’s first company to develop, own and operate single-family homes designed exclusively for rent, has announced plans for its largest scheme to date on a site in Central Bedfordshire.

The 68-ha site, acquired from Valorem Investment Partners (‘Valorem’), is situated at Thickthorn Farm – just north of Houghton Conquest – and forms part of the wider Wixams Park master-plan. Valorem achieved outline planning consent in 2018 following the freehold acquisition of the farm in 2014.

Present Made, which is wholly owned and fully funded by investment manager Apache Capital, aims to create a new community that promotes health, wellbeing and sustainability and is integrated with its surroundings.

In addition to 650 precision engineered smart homes, of which 35% will be affordable, the £215m GDV development, named Mill View, will also include a primary school and an 87-acre country park. The country park will be open to the public and make up over half the site’s total area.

To appeal to a broad range of demographics, a mix of two, three and four-bedroom homes will be provided at Mill View, which will be owned and operated by Present Made for the long-term.  All the homes will be highly energy efficient thanks to the integration of smart technology and use of modern methods of construction. Such technologies will be crucial to Present Made meeting its net zero carbon operational target.

Under designs by award-winning Jo Cowen Architects, Present Made of Mill View will combine important green infrastructure with beautiful connections to support residents and wildlife, along with landscape corridors to create opportunities for active travel across the site.

The £215m GDV scheme includes a range of on-site amenities, which will be free for Present Made residents to use, with access covered in the rent.

Residents will also benefit from on-site professional management provided by a dedicated in-house team, who will help organise events and other communal activities in the shared spaces as well as handling any maintenance issues. 

Present Made of Mill View is the company’s second site in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc, with the company’s flagship development forming a key part of the University of Cambridge’s award-winning 150-ha Eddington master-plan. Present Made has an initial £1.6bn development pipeline, which will see over 3,000 precision engineered smart homes for rent delivered across 10 sites in southern England.

Richard Jackson, co-founder of Apache Capital and CEO at Present Made said: “Today’s announcement demonstrates the seriousness of our ambition in creating the UK’s leading purpose-built and designed single-family housing platform, delivering large-scale schemes using modern methods of construction and putting health, wellbeing and sustainability at the heart of our designs. 

“Present Made was appointed by the University of Cambridge to deliver housing as part of its Eddington master-plan as they were impressed by the quality and the originality of our proposals and Present Made of Mill View will similarly be an exemplar scheme that sets new benchmarks for design, quality and service in the UK’s single-family housing sector.

“Fundamentally we want to do more than simply offer people a better home, we want to offer them a better lifestyle, where living sustainably is second nature. That is why we have invested heavily into the master-planning, design and development of our neighbourhoods and also considered carefully the services and amenities that we will provide onsite.

“There is currently no purpose-built family rental housing in the UK despite couples with children being one of the fastest growing segments of the renting population. Present Made of Mill View will not only offer a new type of high-quality sustainable housing that is both flexible yet secure in tenure while still being attainable to people on ordinary incomes.”

Anthony Maxwell-Jones, founder of Valorem Investment Partners said: “We are delighted to have sold the property to Present Made having delivered a planning consent that will provide much needed affordable housing, public open space within the Country Park and schooling for the local community.