The conversion of a former convent in Dagenham into new housing is beginning to take shape and the Leader of Barking and Dagenham Council, Cllr Darren Rodwell visited the site this week to see how work was progressing.

Cllr Rodwell was joined by Iain Ferguson of Be First and Paul Hart of Murphy Group who are refurbishing the Sacred Heart site into 29 homes for rent at below market price.

Cllr Rodwell said: “It’s great to see the Sacred Heart convent still retaining its character while having a new lease of life as housing for local people. The 29 new homes will give an opportunity to local people and families to find a place to live at a reasonable rent.”

Iain Ferguson, Commercial Director at Be First said: “I am pleased to see the redevelopment of Sacred Heart coming along so nicely. At Be First we’re determined to build not only homes local people can afford, but also homes they can be proud of, and this sensitive conversion of an historic building reflects our commitment to excellent design.”

Paul Hart  said: “As a family-owned company that works in line with our values, we always try and support the communities where we work. We’re really pleased to be involved in this project that does exactly that, and one that will retain the historic character of the Convent when it’s completed its transformation into new homes for local families.”

The development in Goresbrook Road, Dagenham will see the refurbishment of the disused former convent into nine new flats and the construction of 20 new homes around the original building.

The development is due to be completed by September 2021.