Ridgeon's Development Saffron Walden
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Ridgeon's Limited
Saffron Walden
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@ Will Rooke
William Rooke 
Partner - Head of Eastern Commercial
01223 326815 email me about William Rooke

William Rooke is an investment and commercial development property specialist.

Three career highlights: 

  • Land assembly in central Cambridge for 316 room student housing scheme.
  • Acquisition of vacant office building in North Cambridge for £1m and subsequent letting and Asset Management to create a £7m investment.
  • Securing planning consent and anchor tenants for a £100m industrial development in the Midlands. 

On behalf of Ridgeon’s Builders Merchants Limited, Carter Jonas were appointed to procure a development partner for their 30-acre site in Saffron Walden.

Ridgeon’s had been operating out of their site on Ashdon Road in Saffron Walden for over 30 years and whilst it had served them well, the estate was starting to tire and the other tenants leases were coming to an end. Carter Jonas were appointed by Ridgeon’s to design a masterplan for the estate with the following vision:

  • To create a sustainable mixed-use development that provides a purpose built site for Ridgeon’s’ established Saffron Walden business
  • To intensify other employment uses to be provided on the site to better meet market requirements, and;
  • To provide market and affordable housing together with supporting facilities, a landscape structure and public open space

The Carter Jonas commercial team, working closely with colleagues in Planning & Development, proposed a suitable solution for the site which was a scheme of 167 new homes, associated infrastructure and circa 250,000sqft of B1, B2, and B8 space (including the new Ridgeon’s). This masterplan obtained consent in summer 2014.

With the consent to hand, Carter Jonas tendered the project to a handful of regional developers, eventually appointing Turnstone Estates as the preferred partner. Working with Turnstone, Carter Jonas agreed a sale of the residential land to Bloor Homes (now on site with Phase 1) and Turnstone delivered the new Ridgeon’s store to their agreed specification, which opened in winter 2016. The remaining commercial plots are available on a pre-let design and build basis, subject to agreeing spec.