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Aims and ambitions

What is the purpose of this regeneration?

Many of the properties on the Estate do not provide the quality of accomodation that we seek for our tenants. We want to provide our tenants with improved properties designed to meet Lifetime Home Standards. 

Everything we do at Affinity Sutton is guided by our social purpose. It is our firm intention to develop a high quality scheme that will provide social housing in Chelsea for existing tenants and for generations to come. 

(You can also read our full position statement here)


Affinity Sutton tenants

What does this proposed regeneration mean for existing residents living in the Sutton Estate?

All existing Affinity Sutton tenants will be able to remain on the Estate and will live in homes that meet modern living and space standards.

  • They will all retain their security of tenure and remain on social rents (some 20% of local market rent levels).
  • Tenants will only have to move once and will be able to move straight into new homes 
  • They will receive a comprehensive package of support  from our dedicated resident liaison manager.
  • They will also benefit from a payment of £5,300

Many of our Chelsea tenants have lived on the Estate for decades. Nearly four in five of our residents attending our latest consultation events say that our plans offer them and those in housing need the best option for a beautiful home in a desirable area at a price they can truly afford.

More information about the moving process and rents can be found here.


Securing the future of social housing

Why can’t Affinity Sutton simply refurbish the buildings in the Estate?

Refurbishment of the Sutton Estate is simply not possible due to a lack of Government funding for refurbishment projects and the challenges around the age, condition and layout of the Estate. 

The existing flats are simply not fit for the future and it is uneconomic to improve them to modern standards. Refurbishment would also involve a significant loss of flats to bring them up to modern standards for social rent.

Refurbishment is not a realistic, practical or affordable option. This is an approach that has also been agreed with RBKC.


Will any of the blocks be retained?

Yes, Leverstock and Maylands Houses will be retained with a programme of improvement works, as both the accommodation, thanks to previous improvement works, and the layout of these blocks, with their street scene is far better than the rest of the Estate. These blocks also contain shops on the ground floor which are very popular with both our tenants and the local community. 


Will the height of buildings on the new estate be taller than the existing blocks?

No, there will be no increase in the height of buildings on the estate. All buildings will be between four and six storeys high.


Local retailers

What will happen to the shops on Chelsea Green?

Affinity Sutton understands that local businesses are important to the community and therefore local shops will be retained. We will also be providing more additional retail space as part of this regeneration scheme. 

No, there will be no increase in the height of buildings on the estate. All buildings will be between four and six storeys high.


Access through the estate

What changes will be made to access through the estate?

The regeneration gives us the opportunity to significantly improve on the layout of the current Estate and recreate the historic route connecting Cale Street to Marlborough Street.  This route will be  mainly be for the use of pedestrians, with the community square and centre at its heart and leading to the existing archways, which will be retained.  In addition, a new cobbled walkway from Elystan Street to Cale Street will be created.


We are a business for a social purpose

Will Affinity Sutton be profiting from this scheme?

Affinity Sutton is a charity so cannot profit from the regeneration. We reinvest all our surpluses into building new homes, investing in our existing homes and supporting the communities in which our tenants live. Despite recent Government changes which present funding challenges for us, and a significant decrease to our income over the coming years, we are committed to this regeneration for the benefit of all our tenants.

No Affinity Sutton executive director, board member or staff will benefit personally in any way from this or any other scheme we develop. Our motives and indeed our fiduciary duty are to manage our housing assets in the long term best interests of our current tenants and others in housing need.


Sutton Model Dwellings

I’ve heard some rumours about the missing word on the brickwork at the entrance to the Sutton Estate. What word was it and why was it taken down?

When Affinity Sutton became responsible for the Sutton Estate in 2006, the word between ‘Sutton’ and ‘Dwellings’ had already been removed.

Research has confirmed that the missing word was ‘Model’. Sutton Model Dwellings built the estate in 1913 and added their name to the outside of the building. The Estate’s name reflected explicit the wishes of its benefactor William Sutton in his will. In 1927 Sutton Model Dwellings decided to remove the word ‘Model’ from its name and to become Sutton Dwellings, we believe following the name change the word ‘Model’ was removed from the front of the Sutton Estate to reflect this. There is a photograph of the Estate in 1981 showing the change having been made.

Further information on the history on the Sutton Model Dwellings Trust including its change of name can be found here


Funding the regeneration

What percentage of the new properties will be for private sale?

Across the regenerated Estate, 75% of properties will continue to be available for social rent and will allow for every Affinity Sutton tenant currently living on the Estate to be re-housed and for future generations of tenants. The remaining 25% of properties will be for private sale which will fund the regenerated. 

A 'tenure blind' approach will be taken across the regenerated properties to ensure that external architectural features such as entrances, materials and amenity are visually the same for social tenants and private owners/tenants. A range of penthouses and duplex flats will also be available for both social rent and private sale.


Will Affinity Sutton be selling off propeties to foreign investors?

To fund the future of affordable housing on the Sutton Estate in Chelsea a quarter of the overall Estate (not just the new homes) will be for private sale.  We have signed up to the Mayor’s Concordat - 'New Homes for Londoners' - which ensures that a commitment is made to market any new homes in London to Londoners before they are available to buyers from abroad.


Responsible and safe construction management

 What will be done to reduce the impact on tenants and local residents during construction?

As part of the planning application we will produce a draft Construction Traffic Management Plan (CTMP) and a draft Construction Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) which you will be able to comment on.

The contractor will be required to register with the Considerate Constructors Scheme. This code of practice requires the contractor to be considerate, keep the site clean, safe and secure, comply with set working hours and regularly consult with neighbours.

More information on our plans for responsible and safe construction management can be found here.


What happens next

What happens next?

Our planning application was submitted to RBKC on 31 July 2015. RBKC's public consultation on our proposals ended on Friday 11 December 2015. The Council has reviewed the comments received and considered the application. On the 15th November 2016, RBKC's planning committee voted to refuse our application to regenerate the Estate. 

We are deeply disappointed with RBKC's decision and know that many of our tenants will be too. We are looking into our next steps and will let our tenants know as soon as possbile. 


If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us using the contact details provided.