The latest milestone in the redevelopment of Barking’s Gascoigne neighbourhood was marked by a topping out ceremony last week.

The £56 million development alongside Ripple Road will provide 159 top quality affordable homes for local people, with rents as low as £159 a week for a one-bedroom flat at today’s prices.

Councillor Saima Ashraf, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Community Leadership and Engagement at the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, said meeting this milestone on one of London’s largest redevelopments is a minor miracle.

Cllr Ashraf said: “With the massive challenges of Covid, Brexit and disrupted supply chains, it’s a minor miracle we’ve reached this landmark stage and I am delighted to see we’re making such good progress.

“Right now, one in five of all the homes being built by councils in London are built for local people in Barking and Dagenham and we expect nearly 900 new homes to be completed by May 2022.

“We’re delivering real regeneration for Barking and Dagenham.”

Cllr Ashraf was joined by Steve Kitchen of builders Willmott Dixon and Tom Mather, Construction Director at Be First, Barking and Dagenham Council’s regeneration arm.

Steve Kitchen, Director at Willmott Dixon, said: “We’re delighted to be celebrating the topping out of these four buildings which will soon become known as Shuckford Court, Flemming Court, Leleu Court and Mather Court.

“We’re very proud to celebrate this milestone having started this particular building during a global pandemic and all the challenges that has brought us all. It will be one of London’s most sustainable places to live and, in line with Willmott Dixon’s Now or Never 2030 strategy, we’ve worked hard during construction to ensure that sustainability is at the heart of everything we do.”

Tom Mather, Construction Director at Be First, said: “It’s no secret the construction industry has faced some major supply chain issues caused by a combination of Covid, the economic recovery and Brexit, so we’re really chuffed to see our contractor Willmott Dixon meet this major milestone in one the largest regeneration projects in London.

“While we will still face major challenges next year, we will keep on battling to deliver quality affordable homes for local people.”

Once completed this phase of the redevelopment of the Gascoigne neighbourhood will deliver hundreds of the most affordable homes in the capital and one of London’s greenest, most sustainable places to live.

It includes a range of sustainable features, with a targeted 40 per cent cut in CO2 emissions from energy produced by the homes. The development includes an array of rooftop photovoltaic cells and a connection to the local district heating system. There are also over 1,000 cycle parking spaces.

The development is part of a wider strategy to which will deliver attractive public spaces including a 5,000 square metre public park filled with striking designs and a new climbing wall.