WhatHouse? On Tour: Campbell Wharf, Milton Keynes

Posted 12 June 2019 by Keith Osborne

We take a train to a pre-launch event hosted by Crest Nicholson Regeneration at its brand new development in Milton Keynes...

The WhatHouse? team recently left the office to head to the north of Buckinghamshire to take a first-hand look at Campbell Wharf, a newly launched Crest Nicholson Regeneration development in central Milton Keynes. 

The fast train from London Euston was a very early indicator of why this development is likely to be very popular. It was announced ‘first stop Milton Keynes Central’, a journey of around 50 miles in an impressive half hour. From there, it’s a couple of miles from the station to the canalside development: six minutes by car, around a quarter-of-an-hour on a bike or a frequent bus service, and 40 minutes on foot. 

We’re greeted by Crest Nicholson Regeneration’s managing director, Scott Black, and sales and marketing director, Marcus Evans, as their team is making the final preparation for a pre-launch buyers’ event later that afternoon. There’s a brand new, spacious interactive marketing suite to welcome visitors, with a physical model and an online brochure available on large TV screens that brings to the development to life with its 383 new apartments and houses.

Our hosts are extremely proud of the location of this development. It was clear Crest Nicholson Regeneration has done a lot of work around the site and thought carefully about public space. 

Scott Black commented: “At Crest Nicholson Regeneration, what’s important for us is to deliver the supporting social and physical infrastructure at the same time as we deliver the houses. Campbell Wharf is a prime example of this. As part of the regeneration scheme we have already delivered a 111-berth marina, access to the previously unused part of the canal, and built a new T-Junction bridge connecting both sides of the Grand Union Canal. We also plan to deliver a pub, a café, a convenience store and a crèche as early as we can.

“We have invested several million pounds into providing this supporting infrastructure, and this infrastructure will be the foundations on which the new community will be built and thrive.

“At Crest Nicholson Regeneration we have a strong partnership focus to deliver large scale schemes of this nature together with supporting public infrastructure. At Campbell Wharf we will be delivering new businesses, including a waterside pub, café and restaurant. We have worked closely with the Milton Keynes Development Partnership throughout and are continuing this relationship to deliver on the northern part of Campbell Park. We’re also working with the Bedford & Milton Keynes Waterway Trust who want to connect the Grand Union Canal at Milton Keynes with the Great Ouse river at Bedford.”

Milton Keynes is an excellent place to live, it offers a modern city on a grid system – great for vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists alike. From Campbell Wharf itself, you have M1 North and South, and trains into London right on your doorstep.

The very first units were being released during our site visit, with the apartments being built close to the sales and marketing suite well underway. The first residents are expected to move in by the end of this year. Canal House and Wharf View offer a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom properties currently ranging in price from £240,000 to £680,000. Help to Buy is also available on all properties up to £600,000.

Crest Nicholson has cleverly created a beautiful one-bedroom show apartment within the marketing suite that exactly represents an apartment available to purchase, with designs unique to this development. As with Crest Nicholson’s standard high specification, a very good choice of flooring, carpets, tiles and appliances are included as standard. While some buyers may prefer a choice of personalising options, these ‘standards’ compare well to extra-cost upgrades by other developers. Neutral tones mean it’s actually quite easy for a buyer to move in and put their signature on it with colour punctuation or decoration of their own.  

Scott continued: “Underpinned by good quality, bespoke design and placemaking, we are delivering some of the first of its kind properties in Milton Keynes. A great example of this is the Villas where there is an amenity deck instead of a garden out the back, which you park underneath. The design is  very modern and open plan with large windows and plenty of light and airy spaces with multiple terraces overlooking the canal and balconies on the first floor – nothing like this has been delivered in Milton Keynes before, so we hope it sets the standard for the future of the city.”

One example of a currently available home is Plot 77, on the first floor of Canal House. This ‘modest’ one-bedroom apartment is priced £240,000, but its design incorporates a triple-aspect living room (two walls with a window, another with a door out to the private balcony). There’s a utility cupboard with washing machine off the hallway; a nicely styled bathroom; large bedroom with built-in wardrobes and a window out onto the balcony. The open-plan kitchen and living area creates a wonderful space for entertaining and relaxing in one room, while defining an area for the chef to do his or her work. This kitchen incorporates integrated fridge/freezer and dishwasher. 

All units here have allocated parking, which has provided quite a challenge for Crest Nicholson Regeneration, but one which they have overcome with two layers of underground parking. It is designed to leave very ‘clean’ outside spaces with street scenes unclogged and unspoiled by parked vehicles.  

Later phases of this development will be bringing more apartments, including a landmark 12-storey tower, together with a broad range of house types from two-bedroom starter homes to luxurious five-bedroom properties that may command an asking price of around £1m. These too will be in designs unique to Campbell Wharf, with open-plan layouts and plenty of outdoor terracing to add another luxury element. 

While we’re here, the doors open to the pre-launch event and the number of people is overwhelming – there's a queue outside waiting to come and be shown the model and guided around show apartment. Just before we leave, we learn that two properties have already been reserved. We find out the following Monday that over 500 people came to the launch weekend and that there were 14 reservations – a great testament to what Crest Nicholson Regeneration’s Campbell Wharf is offering. 

The marketing suite at Campbell Wharf is open seven days a week, from 10.00am to 5.00pm, contactable on 01908 479 050. Find out more at www.crestnicholson.com/developments/campbell-wharf. Please tell the team there you heard about it through Whathouse.com 

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