Coun­cil makes £4m po­lice sta­tion pur­chase in bid to pro­vide homes

South Bucks plans to de­mol­ish site and re­place it with fam­ily houses to rent on a phased ba­sis

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - TOM HER­BERT tom.her­bert@trin­i­tymir­ror.com Twit­ter: @TRHer­bert

When it be­came clear Thames Val­ley Po­lice in­tended to dis­pose of the site, the coun­cil ex­pressed an in­ter­est

Bucks Dis­trict Coun­cil (SBDC) has bought a for­mer po­lice sta­tion site for more than £4 mil­lion and now hopes to turn it over to hous­ing.

The coun­cil has spent around £4.2m on the Ger­rards Cross po­lice sta­tion site in Ox­ford Road and is in­tend­ing to re­de­velop the site to pro­vide new fam­ily homes for rent.

Some £4,222,500 from the cap­i­tal re­ceipts re­serves has been set aside to buy it, with the coun­cil set to add £5.3m to its cap­i­tal pro­gramme to de­velop the site.

It is hoped money from the site, which is cur­rently be­ing rented by SBDC and used to pro­vide tem­po­rary ac­com­mo­da­tion for home­less fam­i­lies, will ac­count for the loss of the rev­enue sup­port grant, a pre­vi­ously ring-fenced grant for coun­cils which is set to dis­ap­pear.

The cap­i­tal re­ceipts re­serve holds the pro­ceeds from land and other prop­erty as­sets the coun­cil has sold in the past and can only be used to fund new cap­i­tal ex­pen­di­ture.

A plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion will be sub­mit­ted and once that has been ap­proved the sta­tion and for­mer po­lice houses will be de­mol­ished on a phased ba­sis.

SBDC will then em­ploy a project man­ager and de­vel­oper for de­sign and plan­ning ap­proval and to pro­vide the de­tailed busi­ness plan, at a cost of around £800,000.

A spokesman for SBDC said: “The coun­cil has been rent­ing six for­mer po­lice houses at this lo­ca­tion for some time to pro­vide tem­po­rary ac­com­mo­da­tion for home­less fam­i­lies. When it be­came clear that Thames Val­ley Po­lice in­tended to dis­pose of the site, the coun­cil ex­pressed an in­ter­est and is pleased to have ac­quired it.

“The in­ten­tion is to re­de­velop the site and pro­vide new fam­ily homes for rent. The in­come gen­er­ated will bridge the gap fol­low­ing the loss of the gov­ern­ment’s rev­enue sup­port grant.

“The pur­chase and re­de­vel­op­ment of this site will en­able us to make the best pos­si­ble use of the coun­cil’s fi­nan­cial resources to help en­sure our fi­nan­cial re­silience to­wards the end of the decade and be­yond.

“Like all other lo­cal au­thor­i­ties, in the times of fi­nan­cial con­straints we have to con­sider how to make the best of the as­sets we have and we are de­ter­mined to con­tinue pro­vid­ing qual­ity ser­vices for res­i­dents.

“This is an ideal op­por­tu­nity to put our resources to best use by pro­vid­ing a long-term in­come source, as well as meet­ing lo­cal de­mand for good qual­ity ac­com­mo­da­tion for rent.”

The Ger­rards Cross Po­lice Sta­tion has been bought for more than £4mil­lion

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