Henley Standard Property
HOME

Date:

Order your copy Advertise with us! HENLEY PAGES
Delivering the news from Henley on Thames and South Oxfordshire for over 100 years
  News     Sport    Celebrity   What's On Regulars Community Info Henley Standard TV Lifestyle Property Jobs Classifieds Gallery Trade
                               Follow us    Follow us    Newsfeed Search the Henley Standard  
College offers land for homes
Published 04/07/14



THE Henley College has offered its land for housing development in the hope of being able to relocate.

It has offered its Deanfield and Rotherfield campuses for inclusion in the joint Henley and Harpsden neighbourhood plan.

The move comes as the extended public consultation on the draft plan ends today (Friday).

The college says it has been approached by several developers who have offered to build a new single campus, which could cost up to £50 million.

It believes its current sites, along with a smaller plot it owns behind Henley Youth Centre in Deanfield Avenue, could take 400 homes.

This figure almost matches Henley’s full allocation of new housing over the next 13 years for which nine sites have been earmarked in the plan. The youth centre site, which is not included in the plan, is also due to be sold for development.

The Rotherfield campus measures 9.54 hectares and includes the college’s playing fields to the west of the main buildings. The college says the pitches would be upgraded and set aside for use by the whole community.

The Deanfield site measures 1.72 hectares and the third plot, which is currently grassland, measures about 0.1 hectares.

Principal Tom Espley, who announced his retirement this week, said the college was offering the land in principle to avoid planning challenges if a move became possible in future.

The college has long wanted a single site but has been unable to find a suitable location. In 2008, it considered moving to the Highlands Farm industrial estate, off Greys Road, but this plan was scrapped after the Government cut its funding for college relocations following the credit crunch.

The site has now been earmarked for 190 homes under the neighbourhood plan.

The college’s land was valued at about £28 million six years ago. Mr Espley said “five or six” developers had approached the college.

He said: “Until the neighbourhood plan consultation started, there had been no talks about relocating since Highlands Farm fell through.

“As the plan has been brought into the public domain, we have been approached by a number of developers who have asked if this is something we could pursue.

“I’m sure they are doing that to many organisations because of the heightened publicity surrounding the plan.

“We are just clarifying that, in the fullness of time, we’d like to be on one site and would not exclude the possibility of talking with developers because that would not make sense.

“In these years of austerity, we do not know when it will be possible but we felt it was unwise not to say it in case it blocks development in future.”

Mr Espley said he would be willing to consider offers but added: “The neighbourhood plan has got developers very excited but we are not looking at anything happening very quickly.

“I think they want us to come forward so that we are one possible option further down the line.

“There is no scheme ready to go and no money being put forward. We are just protecting the college’s future interests at this stage.”

The neighbourhood plan was put together by a series of volunteer working groups supervised by Henley Town Council and its consultants Nexus.

Cllr Dieter Hinke, chairman of the council’s neighbourhood plan governance committee, said Nexus would investigate the likelihood of the college sites becoming available.

If it was considered a strong enough possibility, the working groups would discuss the issue and might revise the draft plan following more .public consultation.

Cllr Hinke said that if any of the college land was earmarked for housing, some sites in the draft plan would be removed or have their allocations reduced.

He said: “With new sites coming forward, the plan takes on an even greater significance to prevent the overdevelopment of Henley and Harpsden and breaking point of their infrastructure.”

So far 350 people have responded to the current consultation. A final draft will be sent to South Oxfordshire District Council for independent inspection before going to a public referendum.


Published 04/07/14

MOST POPULAR
Boat Race disaster almost made me quit
Couple must pay £2m to friend paralysed in fall
Man dies after Caversham car accident
Russians order seizure of mansion
Could Roman temple be buried in woods?
More frequent shuttle service welcomed
Network Rail considers new gantries
Driven out by air pollution
LATEST NEWS HEADLINES
Rain didn't dampen spirits at Vintage Festival
Independent schools set to merge
New Townlands turned me away
Let’s make things happen, says Mayor
Record breaking summer for Henley in Bloom
Henley peer calls for Britain to stay in EU
Probe launched after dressing room incident
I watched Harry Potter during brain surgery
"Total of new homes needed overestimated"
Boat Race disaster almost made me quit
More frequent shuttle service welcomed
Introvert told he had the wrong personality to cox
Latest Video View more from   Henley Standard TV
ADVERTISE WITH US
LATEST SPORTS HEADLINES
Red Kites victorious at Madejski Stadium
Parkrun applies for Town Council grant
Bingo’s back
Draw winners
5ft 1in, but she’s in charge
Top Videos
 
Most Popular
 
 
 
 
Higgs Group
HIGGS GROUP
Tel: 01491 419400
www.higgsgroup.co.uk
HENLEY PAGES
Tel: 01491 419419
www.henleypages.com
HIGGS PRINTING & DESIGN
Tel: 01491 419429
www.higgsprinting.co.uk
HIGGS OFFICE SUPPLIES
Tel: 01491 419499
www.higgsofficesupplies.co.uk
HENLEY LIFE MAGAZINE
Tel: 01491 419449
www.henleylife.co.uk
HIGGS GROUP, Caxton House, 1 Station Road, Henley on Thames, Oxfordshire, RG9 1AD.

Cookie Policy | Copyright and Terms | Competition Rules | Contact Us | Advertise with us | Site Map
© Higgs & Co (Printers) Limited 2013  |  Registered in England number 1418717