AN aerial photograph gives a bird’s eye view of work underway to transform the former Blue Bird toffee factory site in Hunnington into a housing development.

The drone shot shows the factory and warehouse buildings have been demolished to make way for 86 new homes to be built by developer Bellway South Midlands on the land off Bromsgrove Road.

The listed Administration and Welfare Buildings can be seen untouched as they are being retained to be converted into 22 apartments by another developer.

Bellway South Midlands is building two, three, four and five-bedroom properties on the site, with the first homes expected to be put on the market by the summer.

Halesowen News: An artist’s impression of the new homes An artist’s impression of the new homes (Image: Ophir Architecture)

The development will be known as Harvino, to celebrate the original brand name for what later became famous as Blue Bird Toffee.

The factory producing the confectionery was opened in 1927 but closed its doors in 1998.

Matt Knight, Construction Director for Bellway South Midlands, said: “This striking photograph illustrates the changes that have been made to the site since we began the process of demolition and groundworks in November 2022.

"It clearly shows the dramatic transformation that has occurred in the short time that we have been working at the location.

“These works are the first steps in the process which will see a disused factory site turned into a vibrant new neighbourhood in Hunnington.

"Bellway South Midlands is proud to be playing a major role in the regeneration of this site, which will bring investment and much-needed new homes to the village.”

Halesowen News: The Blue Bird factory site The Blue Bird factory site (Image: Miriam Balfry)

The former factory was built by Harry Vincent, who started the confectionery company and initially called the toffee Harvino but later changed the name to Blue Bird.

The toffee became famous not only for its taste but also for its decorative tins which featured a swallow motif and are still prized by collectors today.

Matt said: “We are well aware of the local history of the site and the affection within the village community and wider area for the former Blue Bird toffee factory.

"The entrepreneur Harry Vincent was a visionary man who decided to build a ‘model’ factory in Hunnington to not only provide a place of work for his employees but somewhere for them to live too.

“This project will continue the tradition of homebuilding on the site by turning this disused brownfield land into an attractive and sustainable community.

"Harvino has been designed to offer a wide range of properties to help meet the needs of the local housing market. “The construction programme is progressing well and we hope to be able to be in a position to launch the development in summer 2023 when we will put the first new homes on the market.

"We expect there to be strong demand for the properties within this unique setting.”

Halesowen News: A layout of the housing development A layout of the housing development (Image: Ophir Architecture)

Police were called when a man, believed to be a contractor working for a demolition firm, was assaulted after a group of travellers broke into the former Bluebird Factory last September.