WORK to transform a former UKLF site in Wilton into a new housing development is under way.
Demolition work has started at Wilton Hill and builders are set to move onto the site in the next couple of months.
Plans for the site include 292 dwellings, ranging from one-bedroom flats to five-bedroom houses, a veterans’ care community providing homes, training and jobs for vulnerable ex-service men and women, a 60-bedroom care home and a community crèche.
The project is the result of a partnership between housing developer Redrow, OurEnterprise and community group Wilton Community Land Trust.
A public meeting was held in the town on Saturday for local people to find out more about plans for an enterprise hub in the centre of the site, called Central Green.
The community-owned centre will provide space for business start-ups, host-desking facilities for home workers, networking space and meeting rooms.
It will be owned by a community interest company, made up of Redrow, OurEnterprise and Wilton Community Land Trust, and run by Basepoint.
Basepoint, a not-for-profit organisation, specialises in helping business start-ups in their first three years and they will provide pastoral care and support for businesses leasing the space.
The enterprise hub will include 60 to 70 small business units, which will be a combination of offices and studios.
“It’s absolutely about providing local jobs for local people,” said Martin Miller, from Basepoint, who said most of the businesses will stay in the area when they have outgrown the enterprise hub.
“Once businesses are formed in Wilton they recruit locally and they are likely to stay in Wilton rather than moving out of the area. It’s a win-win arrangement,” he said.
Mr Miller also said the company would work closely with existing businesses in the town to benefit the whole community.
The partnership has a new website, where more information and updates can be found, visit www.wiltonhillpartnership.co.uk.