Work to start on £37 million Forth Banks build to rent scheme

Work on Newcastle’s first build to rent (BTR) development is set to start following a joint venture which will create 280 new homes in the city centre.

Worthington Properties, Moorfield Group and Panacea Property Development will work together to develop the £37 million Forth Banks site, with construction due to begin this month. Moorfield Real Estate Fund III (MREFIII) will fund the scheme and retain ownership when the development is completed.

The Forth Banks site is located near to Newcastle’s Central Station, adjacent to the Stephenson Quarter. The development, which will have views of the River Tyne, is to be built on a former brownfield site and is an area that Newcastle City Council has targeted for regeneration.

The development will be built by the Marcus Worthington Group’s construction arm, Worthington Construction and when completed will see 280 one to three-bedroom residential apartments in three blocks between seven and nine storeys high.  It will also comprise a 3,000 sq ft (279 sq m) retail unit located on the ground floor.

The is the second joint venture the Marcus Worthington Group, Panacea Property Development and Moorfield Group have worked in partnership on, the first being an £18 million student development in Sheffield, which is now owned by MREFIII and operated by Fresh Student Living.

Russ Worthington, director of Worthington Properties said: “The Worthington Group has always been involved in ground-breaking schemes and the delivery of this project in Newcastle is something we’re very pleased to be involved in.

“It will be a key residential project in the city and one that is going to bring back into use a brownfield site and contribute to Newcastle’s ongoing renaissance, as well as creating jobs and providing a boost to the economy. Newcastle is a vibrant, growing city with several initiatives dedicated to regeneration, which we’re proud to be contributing to through the Forth Banks development.”

Charles Ferguson Davie, Moorfield Group CIO added: “Moorfield has been a pioneer of the new BTR sector through The Keel in Liverpool, which was one of the first schemes to open, and The Trilogy in Manchester which is under construction. With this new project in Newcastle we are aiming to deliver another landmark BTR scheme, focusing on design and service to create an attractive housing option in the city centre.

“The BTR sector is in its infancy and we are proud to be at the forefront of it. The sector forms a fundamental part of many cities’ wider residential strategies and we intend to develop more schemes and so help deliver much needed housing supply across the country.

Neil Patten, managing director at Panacea Property Development, said: “The Forth Banks scheme represents a strong commitment from Newcastle City Council to demonstrate support for BTR. We look forward to working with our joint venture partners to transform this previously underutilised brownfield site into a high quality residential scheme that can assist in the regeneration of other areas.”



For more than four decades, The Marcus Worthington Group has been recognised as one

of the North West’s most trusted commercial property developers and construction companies with a reputation for industry-leading standards and ground-breaking projects.

Within the Marcus Worthington Group is Worthington Properties, which is building an unrivalled reputation for commercial property development in the UK. Working in partnership with major institutional lenders, investors and pension funds, Worthington Properties deliver a wide range of development projects across the office, leisure and retail property sectors as well as a number of student accommodation and residential property developments, which combined exceed £250 million.

 About Moorfield Group (

Moorfield is a UK real estate investment specialist with a 20 year history and track record of investing across a broad range of established and emerging real estate sectors. It currently has c. £2bn under management and has raised c.£1.2bn since 2005 via its value–add MREF funds and its dedicated senior housing platform MAREF. Two of the three MREF funds have now been realised and MREFIII is substantially committed. MAREF acquired Audley, the leading UK retirement village developer and operator in December 2015, and will provide Audley with further capital to grow.

Moorfield is a proactive asset, operational and financial manager of both traditional and alternative real estate with significant experience in managing and repositioning multifaceted investments. The MREF funds make investments both directly and indirectly through corporate vehicles and joint ventures. Assets are either acquired with a view that they will be sold individually once the business plan has been achieved or as part of creating portfolios and platforms to enhance returns. Moorfield also supports entrepreneurial management teams that want to grow their real estate backed businesses or that want to take specific advantage of market opportunities.


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