Construction starts at Miller’s Quay BTR scheme

Construction starts at Miller’s Quay, a Build to Rent scheme at Peel L&P’s Wirral Waters, which will become the UK’s largest urban regeneration project.

Ceremony to mark the start of construction at Miller's Quay - Peel L&P | BTR News
Ceremony to mark the start of construction at Miller's Quay. L-R: James Whitaker, Peel L&P’s Executive Director for Development; Hayley Rees, Managing Director of PIC Capital; Cllr Jeff Green, The Mayor of Wirral and Jonathan Hall, Regional Managing Director (Building South) at GRAHAM.

Peel L&P and Pension Insurance Corporation plc (PIC) announce the start of construction of Miller’s Quay, the cornerstone investment in what will become the largest regeneration project in the UK – creating up to 20,000 permanent jobs. The £130m development is part of a special partnership between highly experienced developer and regeneration business, Peel L&P, Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council (WMBC) and long-term investor, PIC, who are Peel L&P’s funding partner.

The start of construction was marked by a ground-breaking ceremony with Rob Groves, PIC’s Chief Investment Officer and Hayley Rees, Managing Director of PIC Capital; James Whittaker, Peel L&P’s Executive Director for Development; Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region; and Councillor Jeff Green, The Mayor of Wirral.

“This is a truly landmark moment for Wirral Waters with construction on this much anticipated residential scheme now starting. Miller’s Quay is a major scale, catalytic and highly sustainable residential development that we consider to be a great example of brownfield regeneration. This project will pave the way for a number of waterside residential schemes in the new Northbank neighbourhood and it will also deliver considerable social value through comprehensive engagement with both Wirral Met College’s Construction Campus and local supply chains.”

James Whitaker, Executive Director of Development, Peel L&P
Representatives marking the start of construction at Miller's Quay - Peel L&P | BTR News
James Whitaker, Peel L&P’s Executive Director for Development; Hayley Rees, Managing Director of PIC Capital; The Mayor of Wirral Cllr Jeff Green; Metro Mayor LCR Steve Rotheram and Jonathan Hall, Regional Managing Director at GRAHAM.

Construction company Graham is the contractor for Miller’s Quay which will deliver 500 new Build to Rent homes – a mix of one-and two-bedroom apartments, continuing the delivery momentum at Peel L&P’s Wirral Waters, a 500-acre brownfield site and former dockland. One in five apartments will be designated as affordable housing units, with rents set at a maximum of 80% of open market value. Miller’s Quay will be surrounded by parks, green spaces, dockside walkways and cycle routes, with homes having access to cycling storage and electric vehicle charging points. 

“Graham are delighted to add this prestigious residential project to the secured pipeline of work in our Liverpool Region. We are very excited to get started on this significant and much anticipated development that will deliver top quality new homes locally. Performing such a key role on one of the UK’s largest regeneration projects is a huge boost for us and will enhance our residential portfolio, a sector for which we are known for our quality and delivery.”

Jonathan Hall, Regional Managing Director (Building South), GRAHAM

Miller’s Quay is the cornerstone scheme for the broader Wirral Waters development. The project has been made possible through a long-term, regeneration lease structure, providing funding for Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council, which would not have been available from traditional structures, while generating the secure long-term cashflows which allow PIC to match its pension payments decades into the future.  

“The development of Miller’s Quay is a model for how long-term investors can play a key role in the levelling up agenda and create considerable social value. The site will provide much needed housing for the Wirral and offers secure long-term cashflows to back the pensions of our 300,000 policyholders, some of whom live in the region. We hope that the regeneration lease structure used to finance Miller’s Quay can be adapted across a range of sectors and projects for other local authorities, as well as housing associations, universities, NHS trusts, and other organisations looking to unlock funding for regeneration schemes around the country.”

Hayley Rees, Managing Director, PIC Capital

Designed to deliver social good for the area, Miller’s Quay’s core focus is on sustainability. The scheme will utilise a range of energy efficient and low carbon technologies to reduce carbon emissions – including solar power systems and air source heat pumps. There will be Sustainable Urban Drainage to manage surface water from the site into the Docks – through the provision of rain gardens, climate tolerant planting and tree pits designed to accommodate a one in 100-year storm.  

Wirral Waters is supported by central Government as a key part of its levelling up strategy. All buildings across the Wirral Waters regeneration project are targeting BREEAM Excellent, including Miller’s Quay, as well as significant bio-diversity improvements with the planting of over 1,600 trees so far.  

“This is another key milestone in the story of Wirral’s regeneration. These new homes, on a brownfield site, show that our ambitions for the Left Bank area from Bromborough to New Brighton through Birkenhead, Seacombe and Wirral Waters, are coming to fruition and delivering the developments people want and need. This shows the value of our work with partners including the Government. Miller’s Quay is also a real statement of confidence in the future of Wirral Waters and the whole Left Bank area, one which will provide homes – including 100 affordable homes – for hundreds of people.”

Cllr Jeff Green, Mayor of Wirral

The Peel L&P delivery team will also continue to engage with Wirral Met College’s construction students – for site visits, seminars, work experience and apprenticeships. The development will enable students to benefit from experience on the project as Peel L&P seek to create the construction workforce of the future.  

“We are excited about the opportunities that this development offers and look forward to working with Peel and Graham to equip our students with the skills, knowledge and behaviours they will need to succeed through on-site experience, learning seminars, and apprenticeships.” 

Sue Higginson, CEO of Wirral Met College