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New chapter for Chepstow’s historic shipyard

Barratt Homes has opened the doors of its show homes at Brunel Quarter — a new housing development designed to boost the attraction of Chepstow living and celebrate the town’s rich industrial heritage.

‘War Fig’ launch at Chepstow Shipyard in 1920 (© Mabey Archives)

Overlooking the River Wye, this brand new development was once a hub of shipbuilding, known as ‘National Shipyard No. 1’ — a site which manufactured everything from merchant vessels during the First World War to landing craft and Mulberry Harbour sections during the Second World War.

Aerial view of former Chepstow Shipyard, 2008 (© Mabey Archives)

Later, the shipyard was transformed into an engineering hub for bridges and other structures — most famous for providing steelwork for the Severn Bridge in the 1960s.

Artist’s impression of the continuation of the Welsh Coast Path via Brunel Quarter (© Architecture in Motion, 2021)

Over the weekend, the site started its brand new chapter, as ‘Brunel Quarter’ — named after Chepstow’sconnections to Isambard Kingdom Brunel, who designed the Chepstow Railway Bridge in 1852.

As part of the development, Barratt Homes South Wales will consciously retain the former shipyard’s historic slipway — all in an effort to preserve the site’s industrial legacy for future generations of residents to enjoy.

Preserved Grade II-listed flour mill at Brunel Quarter (© Fairfield – Mabey Ltd)

What’s more, a Grade II-listed flour mill at the heart of the development has been preserved and kept as a feature, overlooking Brunel Square. The mill was built in 1851 by Robert Sharpe, a railway contractor who had worked on Brunel’s railway suspension bridge in Chepstow.

On top of its historical features, the 347-home housing development will boast everything from an employment area to a riverside park, public squares, a community orchard and continuation of the Welsh Coast Path. Show homes will be available for appointment-only viewings – in line with Welsh Government guidelines – from 30 January.

Richard Lawson, Sales Director at Barratt Homes said: “The long history of shipbuilding and bridge-building in the area makes Brunel Quarter a very special site.

“From the outset we have been working to retain and highlight this rich industrial heritage — so we are particularly pleased to be preserving the historic slipway, as well other iconic elements to maintain the historic atmosphere of the site.

“The development also includes nods to its setting, including nautical-themed play parks and street names inspired by the ship and bridge-building industries.

“With a range of two-, three- and four-bedroom homes available there is something for everyone, from young families to commuting professionals. We look forward to welcoming you to the site, where we are taking careful precautions to ensure visitor and staff safety at all times. To secure your appointment, please contact Barratt Homes on 03333 558 476.”