THE SELF-BUILD spotlight will shine on Bicester next week as the town stars in a new Channel 4 documentary.

The town is set for television stardom as part of presenter Kevin McCloud’s six-part series Grand Designs: The Street.

The six episodes will follow the first 10 families to take on the task of building their dream home at Bicester's self-build site Graven Hill.

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Mr McCloud said: “It is the idea that you take ordinary people who have got this slight glint of ambition and madness in their eye who say, ‘we can build a house, can’t we? How cool would that be?’

“And before you know it, they’ve turned themselves into true radicals. I love that.”

The 10 ‘pioneers’ have been leading the way over the past four years as they build their dream homes at the south-east Bicester site which is expected to become the UK’s biggest self-built housing estate.

The 188-acre Graven Hill site has been built on former Ministry of Defence land after it was sold to Cherwell District Council in 2014.

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It is expected to house up to 1,900 homes in the next decade which will all be variations on a short list of home blueprints.

Homeowners buy their plot from Cherwell District Council in varying states of the build process, and complete the build themselves according to a masterplan which covers planning permission for the entire site.

Graven Hill managing director Karen Curtin said: “The opportunity to showcase the first 10 self-builders at Graven Hill on the national stage is a milestone not only for the development and its community, but also for the future of UK house building.

“The series will give viewers an insight into a bold and unique type of housing project, which has the potential to revolutionise the way that people approach both choosing – or building – a new home, and the environmental challenges the UK currently faces.”

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The new series is due to air on Thursday, April 4, at 9pm and will reveal the stories behind the 10 self-builders as they navigate the highs and lows of designing and constructing the home of their dreams.

Ms Curtin added: “The platform gives us the opportunity to show viewers the options they have when it comes to self-builds, and that the process is far more accessible than they may think.

“We hope that the diverse range of homes on the street will inspire others to consider building their own grand design or custom home at Graven Hill.”

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Producers, Boundless Productions, said the series follows a range of ‘pioneers’ from all walks of life, including those escaping London and or those looking to build an environmentally-friendly home, to downsizers and first-time buyers.

Self-builders included in the series range from 24 to 73 years old.

Graven Hill will also house a host of other facilities including a new primary school, to be run as an academy, a village centre, supermarket, shops, village green, pub, community centre, and possibly a gym.

For more details on the development go online to

Grand Designs: The Street begins April 4 on Channel 4.