Housing association expands again with landmark deal

Planning Houses

Housing association L&Q has bought one of the largest strategic land firms in the UK, Gallagher Estates, for £505m.

The deal provides L&Q with land for 42,500 new homes mainly in the south and south Midlands, helping it towards its target - launched after merging with East Thames housing association in December - of delivering 100,000 homes, half of which will be affordable.

Warwick-based Gallagher Estates specialises in pushing sites through the planning process before delivering serviced land to the market.

Gallagher Estates will become a wholly owned subsidiary of L&Q and will continue to be run by its current management team as a stand-alone entity.

David Montague, chief executive of L&Q, said: “Through this deal L&Q will unlock land for development across a wider range of tenures, and speed up the delivery of new homes through our ability to invest over the long term.

“It will also add the significant skills and expertise of one of the UK’s leading strategic land companies, and allow L&Q to take a lead role in housing delivery on a regional basis, whilst generating significant resources for reinvestment into new affordable housing.”

Tony Gallagher, chairman of Gallagher Estates, said: “I have no doubt [L&Q] will achieve all their new housing objectives and that they will play a big part in resolving the under-supply of housing for UK Limited.”

The acquisition does not include Tony Gallagher’s commercial and retail property development and investment activities.