Why Goole is all set to be a property hotspot

Goole’s housing market looks set to boom thanks to new jobs and a determination to spruce up the town.

Goole's clock tower roundabout
Goole's clock tower roundabout

It has been called “the town in the middle of nowhere” but Goole is going places after its potential caught the eye of big business. Hundreds of new jobs are on the way and Goole’s housing market is now poised to boom.

Proof of this came recently when the first phase of The Greenways, a development by Hull-based Beal Homes, sold off-plan in a record 22 days. It is one of Beal’s most successful ever launches, with 23 of the 50 properties snapped up during the opening sales weekend. Prices ranged from £130,000 for a two-bedroom house to £300,000 for the largest detached.

Construction will begin shortly on what will eventually be an 800-home enclave built over the next 15 years. With a total value of £130m, it is Beal’s largest-ever scheme and the biggest residential development in the Goole area for many years. The housing scheme is part of a major wave of investment in what is now Yorkshire’s most up-and-coming area.

Goole's strategic position within easy striking distance to motorways and major cities and towns has caught the eye of big business

Siemens Mobility is planning a £200m rail manufacturing facility, which will employ up to 700 people with many high grade jobs, and a worldwide distribution hub is now being built for chemicals company Croda. They will join established companies such as the Tesco distribution centre and glass-maker Guardian Industries in the Goole 36 enterprise zone – a huge swathe of former agricultural land adjacent to the M62 that comes with tax incentives to entice employers.

All the above were smitten by Goole’s access to water, rail and road. Along with proximity to motorways, it has a railway station and is the UK’s most inland port. It sits by the River Ouse, which flows to the North Sea.

“Goole is central to much of the Yorkshire area. This and its transport links give it access to a large workforce,” says Richard Beal, chief executive of Beal Homes. "We started talking to a landowner about building here about eight years ago because we could see the opportunity and potential around increased commercial development, which we knew would mean more jobs and more people in need of housing.”

Those jobs, says Richard, will eventually create more prosperity and regeneration will follow. To speed it up East Riding Council has put together a board of movers, shakers and employers, including Richard and 36 business leaders, to help Goole bid for cash to speed up improvements through the government’s Town Deal fund.

Goole is blessed with some beautiful old buildings

“The town centre is in need of help but it has the right ingredients. It has a lot of attractive old buildings and interesting architecture and the new jobs and more housing will eventually help support its high street,” says Richard.

Helen Hoult, local growth programme manager at East Riding Council, is the driving force behind the Town Deal bid. A dynamo with extensive knowledge and insight, her determination to win what she feels Goole deserves is impressive.

“The port was founded in 1826 by a Dutchman who drained agricultural land to create it. The town grew up around the port. It is Goole’s bicentenary in 2026 and that gives us a focal point, which allows us to think about how we want the town to be then,” says Helen, who has dubbed Goole “the powerhouse of the East Riding”.

Revitalising the town centre and making it more attractive isn’t just cosmetic, it is aimed at attracting workers to an area where unemployment is low. Helen says: “We are up-and-coming but not quite there yet. There will be jobs coming here but do people want to move here and raise families here? This is about making the town more desirable.”

A Beal Homes street scene. The Hull-based family firm will build 800 homeson a prime site in Goole over the next 15 years

The high school has improved, there is easy access to countryside and riverside and Goole has a leisure centre with swimming pool and supermarkets. The housing stock is mainly terrace houses but new home developments, like Greenways by Beal, will boost supply and diversity.

“We are looking at how we can diversify and stimulate our town centre economy with an arts space, leisure facilities and by converting upper floors of shops and offices into residential space. We are also working with owners of some of the lovely old buildings that have slipped into disrepair and we are looking at making more of our waterside and our two marinas,” says Helen.

The river is an attractive feature but it means that managing flooding will be a consideration for developers as much of Goole is on a floodplain, though residents are used to some flooding and old houses were built with cellars to protect the living space.

Estate agent Elliott Marsham, manager of Your Move, Goole, says that the housing market had picked up significantly pre-coronavirus. “A lot of young professionals have bought new homes off-plan from Beal and we are seeing a lot of local first-time buyers.

“Buy-to-let activity is low because of the extra stamp duty and tax but when Siemens is operational in two years time there will be an influx of both landlords and house buyers and prices will go up.”

They are already rising. Your Move figures show that the average house price was £120,000 a year ago and it’s now £145,000. The starting price in Goole is £60,000 for a two-bedroom terrace house, semi-detached homes average £125,000 and detached properties range from £180,000 to £200,000.

“Some people turn their nose up at Goole,” says Elliott. “But it is a great place with fantastic buildings and a lovely, friendly community and it is definitely on the up.”

*Beal is taking registrations from house hunters who want to be first in line for the next phases of the development at The Greenways in Goole, which feature popular three and four-bedroom properties. Beal’s early bird registration scheme means, for a refundable sum of £500, buyers will be given first option to purchase a chosen plot when it is released for sale.

For details: www.beal-homes.co.uk/developments/the-greenway.

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