PLANS for the first homes to be developed at a long-mooted new town at the former Blindwells opencast mine site have been submitted to East Lothian Council.

Bellway and Cruden Homes have lodged planning applications for 200 new homes to be built at Hargreaves Land’s 390-acre site, including in excess of 50 affordable homes.

The developers are proposing a mix of house types, including terraces, semi-detached and detached homes ranging from two to five bedrooms.

Affordable homes will be available both for purchase and rent and the first homes could be available before the end of next year.

Blindwells, located between Tranent and Longniddry, has planning consent for 1,600 new homes, with proposals including social housing, education facilities, a healthcare hub and shops.

What the new town will be named has been the subject of much debate, with schools in the county consulted on what they think it should be called.

Iain Slater, Hargreaves Land’s development director, said: “We are confident that both Cruden Homes and Bellway’s proposals for the site will meet our long-term aspiration to create a strong and thriving new community in this sought-after location close to Edinburgh.

“We have been very encouraged by the level of interest in the scheme and look forward to bringing further plots to market in the coming year.”

Iain Allison, regional director, Bellway Homes Ltd (Scotland East), said: “This is an exciting opportunity for us to be in right at the beginning of the transformation of Blindwells into a vibrant new community in East Lothian, creating much-needed housing for local people and attracting new home buyers to the area.

“We have already seen the benefits a large-scale regeneration project can have on a local area through our work at Shawfair and Winchburgh and are looking forward to starting building in Blindwells.”

Developers hope the planning applications by Bellway and Cruden Homes will receive approval next month, with construction anticipated to start early next year.