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McCarthy Stone responds to Boris’s call to “build, build, build” with new ambitious land buying programme

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News and community
Posted 20 July 2020
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McCarthy Stone responds to Boris’s call to “build, build, build” with new ambitious land buying programme

The UK’s leading developer and manager of retirement communities, McCarthy Stone, is launching a new programme of land buying across England and Wales in response to Boris Johnson’s call to “build, build, build”.

The company is looking to buy 60 or more sites over the next year for the development of new retirement communities. They will offer private apartments and bungalows across a range of tenures with on-site care and support services, helping older people to enjoy an independent and safe lifestyle in their later years. 

The sites will be in or close to high streets in direct support of the Government’s drive to revive town centres following the impact of Covid-19. The Prime Minister pledged on 30 June to put housing and infrastructure at the centre of the Government's economic recovery plans, with a commitment to "build, build, build" and McCarthy Stone is one of the first developers to respond to the challenge, with its ambitious land acquisition programme.  

McCarthy Stone is predicting a strong increase in the demand for retirement living, given that those aged 65+ are set to grow by c.5 million people in the next 20 years. Its 441 existing communities have also proved safe places to be for its homeowners during the Covid-19 pandemic, where the impact of the virus has been around half that seen among the 65+ population generally.

Despite a challenging fews months of trading caused by the national lock down, McCarthy Stone is in a very strong cash position with over £100m to invest in new land opportunities. The company has also secured £300m from the Government’s Covid Corporate Financing Facility (‘CCFF’) to support its ambitious plans. 

John Tonkiss, Chief Executive Officer, said “The Prime Minister is spot on in recognising that housebuilding will be central to the UK’s recovery effort, and more and better housing for older people is a critical part of the mix. High-quality and well-located retirement communities bring life back to high streets and help older people remain independent and safe in their own home, with companionship and assistance on hand if needed. Our communities improve the sense of well-being and lives of our customers and have responded well to the challenges of Covid-19. Coupled with the ageing population, we are predicting a major increase in interest. We need new land, and lots of it, in order to satisfy this growing demand.”

The 60 new sites will complement the company’s existing workflow, having purchased c.200 sites over the last four years. The new sites must be located on central brownfield (previously developed) locations, close to town centres and local amenities where customers wish to live. A typical site will be between 0.5 to 5 acres, ideally in a prominent location and with level access. 

Each new retirement community brings significant local benefits. A typical scheme:

  • Saves local hospitals and care services £3,500 per person per year by keeping people healthier and happier
  • Releases family-sized homes as older people downsize and create new housing chains, typically ending with first time buyers joining the housing ladder
  • Sustains local shops and high streets, with 97% of McCarthy Stone’s sites purchased in 2019 being in central, brownfield locations.

Generous commissions are available for the right site. To find out more, please go to  New site introductions can be submitted directly via email to [email protected].

McCarthy Stone is also known for its industry-leading standards around build quality and customer service. It has achieved the full five star customer service satisfaction rating from the Home Builders Federation (HBF) for 15 consecutive years, the only developer to achieve this accolade.

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