THE former Crownbridge School site in Sebastopol will be developed into affordable housing.

Yesterday, Torfaen council’s cabinet agreed it should be sold to a Registered Social Landlord (RSL).

Members were asked to approve recommendations for the disposal of the former Crownbridge School site to a social landlord for less than the full market value.

Crownbridge Special School relocated from Sebastopol to Croesyceiliog in April last year.

Cabinet declared the old site in Sebastopol surplus to council requirements in July 2012 and the buildings have been boarded up with services disconnected or pending imminent disconnection.

A report which was presented to cabinet members said options for the disposal of the site were considered by the Capital Programme Review Board and it was concluded that given the relatively small size of the site, it could be used as a pilot scheme to improve the provision of affordable housing in the borough.

Chief officer for social care and housing Sue Evans said: “There is a significant need for affordable housing in Torfaen and we are looking to utilise land in a creative way. The site will create around 24 units of accommodation.

There will be a mixture of properties, which will be worked out in due course.

“The site wouldn’t be suitable for larger developments, so this is a ‘win-win’ situation to create affordable housing.

“We will assess our preferred partners who provide social housing and the preferred RSL will be referred to the executive member for housing and council leader for final approval.”

Cllr Gwyneira Clark said: “I welcome this as it’s the only way we can provide social housing. It’s a prime site and it’s nice the development is going to be localised, which will safeguard jobs.”

The gross market value of the land has been estimated as £650,000, but the report said this figure has not taken into account the cost of asbestos removal, demolition, or abnormal development costs which may arise, meaning the council would receive less.