Mill Lane, Newbury RG14

Mill Lane, Newbury RG14

A brownfield development site comprising the former Magistrates Court and adjacent vacant dwelling, extending to approximately 0.21 hectares (0.51 acres), in a canal-side location close to the town centre of Newbury, with potential for residential development.

BACKGROUND
Our client, Homes England, own the land edged red on the plan above, which they purchased from HM Courts and Tribunal Service and Thames Valley Police. Homes England is the government’s housing accelerator. It is a nondepartmental public body, sponsored by the Ministry of Housing, Community and Local Government and its function is to fast-track the delivery of housing across England.

Homes England have carried out feasibility studies to support a proposal for residential development on the site, and have obtained pre-application advice from West Berkshire Council which is supportive of this proposal. Homes England intend to demolish the existing buildings and clear the site prior to disposal.

SITE DESCRIPTION
The site is located in the centre of Newbury, a market town in Berkshire, approximately 20 miles west of Reading, 25 miles east of Swindon and 27 miles south of Oxford. The site is located on the northern side of Mill Lane, immediately to the east of the roundabout forming the junction of the A339 with Bear Lane and Kings Road. To the north of the site is the Kennet and Avon Canal, to the west is Newbury Police Station (Thames Valley Police) and to the east is a light industrial unit.

Opposite the site, to the south of Mill Lane are some newly developed houses and some two storey terraced housing. To the east of the site Mill Lane becomes more mixed, including offices and some light industrial units alongside further new residential development.

The property benefits from easy access to a number of amenities, including the Kennet and Parkway Shopping Centres and a Vue cinema, which are located 0.5 miles away. The site also benefits from excellent transport connections being 4 miles south of the M4 and 0.5 miles from Newbury train station which has regular mainline services direct to London Paddington.

The existing Property comprises the former Magistrates Court and the vacant residential property known as 20 Mill Lane. In total the site, which is broadly rectangular in shape and is predominantly flat, measures approximately 0.21ha (0.51 acres).

PLANNING POSITION
The West Berkshire Local Plan is currently made up of a number of documents, in particular the following:

• Core Strategy Development Plan Document (2006 - 2026) adopted July 2012
• Housing Site Allocations Development Plan Document adopted May 2017
• West Berkshire District Local Plan 1991 - 2006 (Saved Policies 2007) as amended in July 2012 and May 2017

West Berkshire Council have begun a review of the Local Plan to cover the period up to 2036. The publication of the Draft Proposed Submission Document is anticipated before the end of 2019.

The Magistrates Court site is not allocated for any specific use in the current West Berkshire Local Plan. It adjoins (but is outside) the Conservation Area that encompasses the town centre and the Kennet and Avon Canal.

Homes England submitted a request for pre-application advice 2016 regarding the redevelopment of the Magistrates Court site for residential use, on the basis of an initial feasibility study. The pre-application advice received supported the principle of redevelopment for residential use and provided some guidance for a future scheme.

Homes England subsequently purchased the neighbouring property, 20 Mill Lane, from Thames Valley Police and have carried out a further, more detailed feasibility study for a redevelopment of the combined sites, taking into account the pre-application advice received in 2016.

It should be noted that some aspects of planning policy have changed since the initial pre-application advice, in particular with the publication of the Draft Allocations DPD in May 2017.

The proposed revised scheme comprises a mix of 25 no. one and two bedroom residential units within four blocks, with 26 no. parking spaces on site, as set out in the 2017 Feasibility Study. Homes England are now in the process of obtaining new pre-application advice in relation to this revised proposal, which addresses the issues raised by the 2016 preapplication advice. It is anticipated that this new advice will be received in late November 2019 and it will be made available to prospective purchasers as soon as it is received.

All parties considering submitting an Expression of Interest should review the information provided supporting the requests for pre-application advice to inform their responses.

TECHNICAL REPORTS
Our client has undertaken a number of investigative reports in support of the requests for pre-application advice; copies
of which are available to view online upon request by emailing natasha.eliot@carterjonas.co.uk.

EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST
Expressions of Interest are invited from prospective purchasers on an Unconditional basis for the land, details of which should include:

- Type of scheme proposed including an accommodation schedule.
- Proposed planning strategy to optimise the development of the land, giving consideration to the Pre-App feedback
already obtained.
- Considerations for any potential abnormal costs based on the technical information provided.
- Any mechanisms resulting in an enhanced payment to the landowner by way of overage.
- The availability and source of funding, with evidence.
- Details of expertise and track record in the development of land of a similar scale, together with details of the
project management team and any external professionals.
- Any other relevant information or proposals to be considered.

If at this stage you are prepared to submit a bid on a conditional basis, please provide details of any conditions you would attach to your bid, and / or any further information you would require to enable you to submit an unconditional bid.

EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST RESPONSES
Responses to the Expressions of Interest invitation should be made via email to natasha.eliot@carterjonas.co.uk and received by 12 noon, 13 November 2019. We thank you for your attention and look forward to hearing from you.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
For further information, please contact:

Natasha Eliot
Senior Surveyor
01865 404411
07880 201741
natasha.eliot@carterjonas.co.uk

Ryan Harris
Associate Partner
01962 833376
07788 727737
ryan.harris@carterjonas.co.uk

Situational Details
Location
Brownfield Urban Immediate Land
Plot Range
6 to 20 Plots 21 to 50 Plots
Use
New Build Unconditional Houses + Apartments Affordable
Carter Jonas reference
PDS190006
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