Eddington is more than a housing development: it is a way of securing the University’s long-term future. Both the University and Colleges need new affordable housing for key workers, and ultimately the North West Cambridge Development will provide 1,500 affordable University-subsidised homes for qualifying staff.
A recent survey of the 69 households who have already moved into Eddington gives us a broad picture of our residents. We will update this information as more people move to Eddington.
- 62% of residents have described themselves as postdocs. A further 31% have described themselves as assistant and academic-related staff and 7% are academic, College or affiliated institution staff.
- Over three quarters of Eddington residents (77%) said accommodation was a consideration when looking at jobs.
- Before moving to Eddington, 69% lived within the Cambridge area, 23% lived elsewhere within the UK and 9% lived abroad
- Prior to living in Eddington the majority of residents (65%) were living in private rental accommodation, while 19% were in a house-share situation.
- When asked why they chose to live in Eddington, 61% of those surveyed said the subsidised rents were a big attraction. A further 18% said the location, 12% said they wanted the University as a landlord and 9% said the quality of the development.
- Most of the residents surveyed said that now they live in Eddington they cycle to work (66%) or walk to work (14%). Just 9% drive to work.
Kingsley moved to Cambridge in February 2017 to start a new role as a Research Associate in Astrophysics at the Department of Physics.
Kingsley said: “Rental prices in Cambridge meant the key worker scheme at Eddington was the only way I could afford to live in a high quality apartment, with generous space, but also in a leafy, pleasant location close to everyday amenities. The quality of the build here is high meaning the homes offer exceptional value for money.”
Commenting on the interior of the flats he said: “The accommodation is great – bright and airy. I am in a ground floor apartment, which has high ceilings and large windows letting in lots of natural daylight.”
Kingsley was also attracted to the sustainable lifestyle at Eddington, “The sustainability aspects are very important to me. The rainwater system is fascinating and I am a big fan of the District Heating Network as a more efficient way of providing heating. Even the bins are an innovative concept and it’s interesting to see them in action.”
Trina Holmes & Rhian Buchan
Trina Holmes was “born and bred” in Cambridge, but after living in Wales for several years could not fi nd anywhere to live when she decided to move back to her home city.
The mother-of-three was forced to have a long commute to her job as a catering supervisor at the University’s Institute for Manufacturing because she could not afford to live in Cambridge.
She said: “I looked everywhere and I got turned down everywhere. I was heartbroken when I couldn’t get anywhere to live anywhere near Cambridge. I couldn’t even look at them, they were just too expensive.
“We were in a house in Cottenham but we were living with rats and mice all the time. Eventually a friend offered to rent us his place, but it was in Mildenhall. It’s 50 miles a day, it was almost an hour each way. I was spending £180 a month on fuel.”
But that all changed when the 52-year-old moved into a flat in Eddington in July 2017. She lives with her 18-year-old daughter Rhian Buchan, who also works for the University as an administrative apprentice at the Academic Division.
Trina explained how her new home has changed her life: “It’s wonderful, I can walk or cycle to work. The best thing for me is that I can be close to the centre and feel like I live in Cambridge again. I’m still feeling really over the moon about it, I can’t believe it.”
Vikash Singh, Shalu Grewal & Vihaan Singh
Dr Vikash Singh, a microbiologist postdoc at the University, has recently moved to Eddington with his wife Shalu Grewal and their son Vihaan, who is almost two. He has spoken about how Eddington is growing quickly and with it a real sense of community amongst the residents.
Originally from northern India, the 27-year-old said: “The community here is wonderful; the kids have each other to play with and a nice play area where you know they are safe. It’s also very international which is fantastic. We’ve found other families from a similar cultural background as us who we can talk to and really have something in common.”
Shalu, 26, who is a computer science engineer but is currently staying at home to look after Vihaan, who is nearly two, said: “In our old house we didn’t know our neighbours and there was a real lack of community spirit. It’s much more social here and great for Vihaan as there are plenty of children living close by for him to play with. It’s really lovely.”
The couple moved to Eddington after living in a private rental house in St Ives for a year. Vikash, a pathology microbiologist, said: “We trust the University housing far more than the private rental market. Not only is rent fair and affordable, you also know you’ll get your deposit back correctly and there is a proper organisation to help you with any issues.”