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Nigel Hugill: the man building houses for the work-from-home revolution

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‘Everything in front of you didn’t exist 18 months ago.” Nigel Hugill is standing in front of a playground, gesturing past the swings and climbing frame to the park and homes behind.It’s a sunny spring day in Houlton, just outside Rugby in Warwickshire, and residents of a large new housing development are making the most of the weather, taking their children to the playground and eating lunch at the cafe.About 1,000 homes have already been built on the 1,200-acre site, as well as a primary and secondary school, with a further 5,000 houses to be added by the time the development is completed, in 15 years’ time.Urban&Civic – the company Hugill co-founded with Robin Butler in 2009 and which he leads – is the “master developer” of this project and 13 others across England.

That means it takes responsibility for the site from conception and planning to construction by housebuilders and completion.Hugill set up Urban&Civic with the “objective of building outside the M25, but within 100 miles of London” in areas with the biggest population growth, and therefore greatest housing demand.

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