Wellingborough Council to sell off derelict sites

The swimming pool in Croyland Road' was knocked down in 2007. The site it was on could now be sold off
The swimming pool in Croyland Road' was knocked down in 2007. The site it was on could now be sold off

Three unused sites in Wellingborough could be sold off to help pay for large-scale projects.

Members of Wellingborough Council’s resources committee have given the go-ahead to look into selling derelict land and empty buildings.

The three sites identified for sale are an old factory in Arthur Street, the former swimming pool site near Croyland Park, and land next to Penrith Drive.

None of the sites identified currently bring in money for the council and selling them would increase capital receipts – money used for large scale projects – as well as reducing maintenance costs and providing land for new housing.

Fly-tipping and anti-social behaviour could also decrease if the sites were brought back into use.

Planning permission has already been obtained for 12 homes on the Arthur Street factory site, and councillors agreed at a meeting last night that it should now be offered for sale.

It was also agreed that an application for outline planning permission should be submitted for the two sites near Croyland Park and Penrith Drive before they too are put on the market.

Leader of the council and chairman of the resources committee Cllr Paul Bell said: “We have said for a number of years that we want to maximise the benefits of our property assets.

“We own various plots of land and dilapidated buildings that could be sold without affecting our overall investment portfolio.

“These sites don’t bring in any cash ­– in fact they cost us money.

“Selling them could bring a number of benefits, including giving us capital money that we could reinvest in schemes that benefit the community, as well as reducing current maintenance costs.

“We are also always mindful of government targets around housing supply and these sites have been identified as places that much-needed homes could be built or developed.

“It’s still early days and these things do take a lot of time to put into place, but by agreeing that these three sites can be sold we can now start the process.

“We won’t be selling off land on an ad hoc basis – we will be investigating and identifying sites that offer the most return and we’ll continue to do this over the coming years as part of a longer-term programme to make the most of our assets.”

The committee was also asked to approve a future sale of two cemetery chapels in London Road.

Councillors decided that a number of issues would need to be resolved with the listed buildings before they could be put on the market, and deferred discussions to wait for more detailed plans.