Kettering business park could finally be occupied

Developers have said work on an empty business park could begin as early as next month ' despite last week denying any plans were in place
Developers have said work on an empty business park could begin as early as next month ' despite last week denying any plans were in place

Developers have said work on an empty business park could begin as early as next month.

Cransley Park, a 32-acre site next to the A14 just outside Kettering, has stood empty for a number of years.

Last week it was revealed that construction vehicles seen on site were simply using it as a temporary storage area as part of the ongoing widening works on the A14.

However, landowner St Francis Group have now announced it is in talks with potential local occupiers about moving on to the site.

Bosses at the firm, which specialises in dealing with problematic sites, also insisted there are no longer any issues surrounding asbestos and other contaminants which could act as possible roadblocks to development.

Gareth Williams, director at St Francis Group, said: “Obviously, there has been inactivity on the site and that’s particularly due to what happened to the commercial market and the economy more generally.

“But demand has begun to creep back up during the course of this year.

“How quickly it is occupied is going to depend on occupier interest [but] I am encouraged by some of the early discussions we have ongoing.”

Cransley Park was previously a foundry and scrapyard – which meant asbestos contaminated the site.

But Mr Williams said he hoped to dispel the “misconceptions” about whether the park could be used, adding: “It’s no longer a problem site. It’s been cleaned up.

“There are no ground-related issues with the site whatsoever.

“We are going to tidy it up, present it a bit better – we want to raise its profile and get the message out there that there is no reason it shouldn’t be used.”

In 2006, the site’s infrastructure and clean-up costs were part-funded by a Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership grant under the Fit for Market programme.

Existing planning consent allows the development of up to 400,000 sq ft of industrial, storage or distribution and hotel uses.

St Francis Group has instructed a new agency team, Prop-Search and Lambert Smith Hampton, to market the site. A relaunch is planned for as early as mid-October.