New block will complete £60m Somerdale scheme

A GROUND-breaking ceremony has been held to mark the start of work on St Monica Trust’s latest development in Keynsham.

The building of Block D will mark the completion of the charity’s £60 million redevelopment of the former Somerdale factory.

Built on the vacant land opposite the Somerdale Pavilion, Block D will be a five-storey building offering 44 independent-living apartments. They will be a mix of one and two-beds, with 18 apartments providing ‘affordable’ housing for residents nominated by Bath and North East Somerset Council.

The design includes off-street parking for cars and bikes, a new landscaped area for pedestrians between Block D and the Somerdale Pavilion, plus a new entrance to the Pavilion car park off Trajectus Way.

The ground-breaking ceremony was attended by St Monica Trust’s chief executive, David Williams, and president of the board of trustees, Tim Ross, along with residents and staff from The Chocolate Quarter Retirement Village, which opened in 2018.

David Williams said: “The building of Block D not only marks the completion of the trust’s redevelopment of the former Somerdale Factory, but it also fulfils our original commitment to provide affordable housing for the local community.”

Tim Ross said: “This exciting redevelopment of the former Somerdale factory and the additional investment in Keynsham reflects our commitment to build communities where older people can flourish, alongside our promise to provide affordable housing.”

RED Construction Group’s South West division have been appointed as the trust’s preferred builders for the project, with completion expected in September 2025.