And then they were gone.

Long-standing blocks of sheltered accommodation council flats have been finally levelled. The pictures show the last standing of 48 flats in George Gay Gardens, in Park South, being knocked down by the long arm of a high reach excavator.

And in their place, more than 100 new homes will be constructed – 100 flats and 49 houses, as part of Swindon Borough Council’s plans to increase social housing in the town.

Swindon Borough Council’s cabinet member for housing and public safety, Cathy Martyn, said: “Queens Drive is an important gateway into Swindon and this development is a further example of how we are investing in our local communities to benefit local residents.

“We have just finished our latest affordable housing development in Penhill and tenants are now moving in, which is great news.

“These new properties on Queens Drive will deliver the same kind of quality, modern homes for our tenants and will provide a real boost to our housing stock.”

The buildings have been empty since its tenants were rehomed in 2016.

The site is now the subject of a planning application, lodged by the borough council itself to build flats and houses to be offered for rent and shared ownership sale.

This demolition is the first phase in the £30 million programme, which will also see four T-shaped apartment blocks along Queen’s Drive knocked down as well.