Call to arms for buyers in Huntingdon

The initial release of new homes will be available to buy today and the first primary school will open in September and with a perimeter of 18km, Alconbury Weald, built around the site of an old, cold-war RAF base, will deliver nearly 7,000 homes when it is finally completed.

Larger than a garden village but smaller than a new town, the £1.5bn scheme, on the outskirts of Huntingdon in Cambridgeshire, has been hailed as an urban extension. It will include a Government-backed enterprise zone, two primary schools, a secondary school, a health centre, 700 acres of green space and a cricket pitch.

The land owner and developer, Urban and Civic, who bought the brownfield site from the Ministry of Defence and sarted building on it in 2015, also plans to add a railway station on the abandoned line that runs across the 1,425 acre site to shuttle commuters into Huntingdon, Cambridge and onto London.

Urban and Civic, which specialises in regional regeneration, has teamed up with regional housebuilder, Hopkins Homes to design and build the properties which will range in size from two-bedroom apartments and coach-houses up to large, five-bedroom, detached family homes.

Such schemes go someway to addressing the housing supply crisis in areas such as Cambridgeshire. Homeowners in the city - famed for its burgoening science and biotech industries - have seen a 44.7 per cent rise in values since 2007, taking the average price to £388,400 according to Hometrack.