Work on homes at the former RAF site in Upwood, which has been empty for more than 20 years, is finally due to start next year.

First phase of RAF Upwood site acquired by Evera Homes for 160 houses. First phase of RAF Upwood site acquired by Evera Homes for 160 houses.

A reserved matters application is being prepared for consideration by Huntingdonshire District Council and Bury Parish Council, with construction expected to start next summer.

The first phase of building, which will be carried out by Evera Homes, spans about 28 acres and will include 160 homes.

RAF Upwood was closed by the Ministry of Defence in 1994, but attempts to develop the land since then have failed to take off.

In 1981 the site became one of three in the county - along with RAF Alconbury and RAF Molesworth - to come under the control of the United States Air Force.

The homes at the site are to be developed by Evera Homes, with demolition of parts of the site and other preparatory works to begin in the spring.

Proposals to build on RAF Upwood by Strawsons Property were first considered by Huntingdonshire District Council in 2013, but after a number of setbacks, including drainage problems and traffic objections, it is taken more than five years for plans to come to fruition.

Claire Higgins, chairman of Evera Homes said: "Acquiring the site at RAF Upwood is a big milestone for us. It gives us a real opportunity to develop sustainable properties that give a nod to the sites historic character and at the same time continue to build high quality homes that help address the significant housing need in Cambridgeshire."

The site, which has been subject to arson attacks and vandalism over the past decade, was built in 1917 for the Royal Flying Corps - before it became home to RAF squadrons and expanded from 1936.

Evera Homes has also committed to the purchase of the remaining land at RAF Upwood site, which is allocated for further residential development, offering 450 properties in total.

Work on the planning application for the second phase will commence in 2020 to secure consent in time to ensure Evera is ready to continue with the development once the initial phase completes in 2023.