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Planning approved for new affordable housing development

York-based property specialist, Helmsley Group, has received approval from City of York Council (CoYC) for its LUNA development, aimed at first-time buyers.

The new development, located on Fifth Avenue, Heworth, will see builders transform the site containing Cherry Tree House, a former NHS residential care facility, creating 48 one- and two-bed apartments.

The planning application was approved, thanks in part to the company’s previous success with first-time buyers at Clifton Moor and more recently at its Aura development, which saw all 14 apartments reserved within two weeks following its launch during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Continuing Helmsley’s commitment to reducing carbon emissions, the design is energy-efficient, featuring roof tiles made from 50% recycled materials, with the site layout being futureproofed for all parking spaces to in time be converted into EV charging points.

Max Reeves, development director at Helmsley Group, said: “Helmsley Group has a strong reputation in York for providing first-time buyers and families with high quality, affordable housing. Our planning application proposed demolishing a vacant building that was surplus to requirements for the NHS and creating an opportunity for more people to enjoy living close to the city centre.”

“Not only are we thrilled to have received planning permission, but we’re also delighted with the feedback from City of York Council, with one committee member calling it ‘one of the best planning applications we have had in York for quite a while’. The amount of positive feedback reflects how hard the team has worked to make sure that LUNA carefully considers the amenity of its future residents. We’re looking forward to starting work on this exciting project.”

Homes will be available through the Help to Buy scheme. For more information contact