New community centre still not open at troubled Priors Hall Park
The freshly-built community centre at Priors Hall Park has still not been handed over to Corby Council despite being finished more than three months ago. and the authority is owed other buildings and cash worth about Â£625,000.
Corby Council is also owed other buildings and cash worth about £625,000 from the developers that went into administration in October.
The adjoining school has also not been handed over to the county council, although pupils started there in September.
The titles for both were due to be handed over on completion but legal arguments over future use meant that ownership was never transferred and then developers BeLa and Corby Developments were placed into the hands of the administrators.
Now all the parties are negotiating for the handover to take place so that frustrated local people can start using their community centre.
When large-scale developments such as Priors Hall are given planning permission, developers have to agree to meet obligations as part of a section 106 agreement. These can include public buildings, community facilities and financial contributions to help the authorities manage the planning process.
The Northants Telegraph can also reveal, following a Freedom of Information request, that there are several parts of the S106 agreement that are now overdue. These include:
A £500,000 changing facility that was due to be built and transferred to Corby Council in 2015. It is not yet built.
Highways contributions of an unknown quantity to Northants County Council
A £50,000 contribution to Corby Council’s development control department (invoiced in September 2016)
A £30,000 S106 monitoring contribution (invoiced in September 2016)
A £45,000 deferred interest payment(invoiced in September 2016)
A Corby Council spokesman said: ““It is expected that Priors Hall Community Centre will be transferred over to Corby Borough Council sometime this month.”
Administrators Deloitte said that they are currently liaising with the local authority as part of the administration process.
The first residents of Priors Hall moved into the new estate in 2010 amid promises of shops, pubs, hotels, schools and acres of planted public open spaces. But six years on, most of the public facilities are still in the planning stages.
Last month the Northants Telegraph revealed that building of phase two of the Gateway development had been put on hold after issues were found with the foundations of several part-built homes.