WORK is starting on two new council house developments in Oxford.

The Oxford City Council schemes will provide almost 50 new homes at Minchery Farm in Littlemore and a new sheltered housing scheme at Bradlands in Old Marston.

The Bradlands redevelopment will see the old buildings demolished and replaced with 49 modern sheltered housing flats.

The scheme in Minchery Farm will see 48 affordable family homes being built, providing a mix of flats and two-, three- and four-bedroom homes.

City councillor Scott Seamons, executive board member for housing, said: “This is an exciting time in Oxford. We need suitable council houses for our residents and these two sites will provide excellent modern housing that is suitable for today’s residents.

“The council is committed to providing more affordable housing to meet housing need in Oxford.”

Bradlands will offer older people modern sheltered housing, with walk-in shower rooms, individual heating systems and excellent communal facilities. The homes in Minchery Farm have been designed around communal green space and will also have gardens and private off-street parking.

The two sites are part of a larger council programme to deliver 113 new homes across the city. Three smaller sites will provide 16 properties at Bury Knowle, Headington, Cardinal Close, Littlemore, and Leiden Road, Wood Farm. The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) has provided more than £2.4m to support the five schemes through the Affordable Homes Programme 2011-2015. The city council is also contributing more than £17m to the programme.

Lucy Atkins, HCA area manager, said: “Through our work to support the provision of new and affordable homes across England, we know how important projects like Bradlands and Minchery Farm are to local communities.

“Our investment has helped provide new and improved affordable homes for people of all ages in high demand in Oxford. Partners have worked hard to get the projects to this stage. It’s great to see that their efforts are making a difference.”

Work is expected to take about 12 months, with the homes ready for occupation by March next year.