Monday, 22 October 2018

BBC base under offer

THE BBC’s base in Caversham is under offer.

The Caversham Park estate in Peppard Road, which houses BBC Monitoring and BBC Radio Berkshire, was put up for sale in June last year.

It is not known who has bid for the 93-acre grade-II listed estate or the size of the offer. It is being marketed by property consultants Lambert Smith Hampton who refused to comment.

The BBC is selling the site to save on property costs and staff are due to move to Thames Valley Park in Earley when the sale is completed. The building dates back to the Norman Conquest and has been owned by the BBC since 1943, when it was used to listen to foreign broadcasts during the Second World War.

In 2016, Fran Unsworth, BBC World Service group director, said the cuts to BBC Monitoring were to make it “fit for the future”.

Lambert Smith Hampton say a study has been carried out into the possibility for development within the grounds, subject to planning permission.

But Tony Page, deputy leader of Reading Borough Council, has said the council would not allow homes to be built there as the land is of “supreme importance” and the future owner should respect the listed building.

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