With a contractor now appointed, a 14-home development is set to begin at the former site of the King Offa pub by the end of the month.

St Albans City & District Council has assigned Neilcott Construction Ltd for the work, taking place in the Cottonmill area of the city.

The project had been put on hold last year, when Jarvis Contracting, went into administration after construction had begun.

The £6.6 million development regenerates what used to be "a site of poor-quality temporary accommodation" in Norman Close, adjoined with the site of the former King Offa pub.

Herts Advertiser: The former King Offa pub, in Cottonmill.The former King Offa pub, in Cottonmill. (Image: Archant)

A two-bedroom, wheelchair-adapted bungalow, two four-bedroom detached homes and 11 three-bedroom homes will all be created.

All 14 properties - expected to be completed by June next year (2025) -  will be made available at social rent to families on the council’s housing register.

Additional funds of £890,000 needed to be found to cover inflationary rises in the cost of building materials, along with the cost of the process of reappointing a new contractor.

Herts Advertiser: The new homes, set to be constructed at the site of the former King Offa pub.The new homes, set to be constructed at the site of the former King Offa pub. (Image: St Albans City & District Council)

Councillor Jacqui Taylor said: “I am really pleased that we have been able to appoint a new contractor to deliver these much needed homes and regenerate this site in Sopwell.

"It was sad to see Jarvis Contracting go under, as it was a local company that provided skilled jobs for local people and the consequences for us could have been severe, as it made funding the King Offa development a greater challenge.

“One of our priorities as a Council is to provide more social housing for people in our district and we were determined that we would continue with the project.


“The King Offa site, combined with The Hedges in Batchwood that is also underway, will deliver 26 homes to house around 70 people.

"We have prioritised three bedroom homes as much as possible on these sites to also address overcrowding for families who are waiting for a larger home.

"The one and two bedroom homes freed up by families moving will then also become available for people on the housing register waiting for a home.”