Industrial estate sale revealed as confidential report published accidentally online

Plans to sell off a village industrial estate near Bridgnorth have been revealed in a private report accidentally published to Shropshire Council's website.

The future of Alveley Industrial Estate is due to be discussed behind closed doors at a full Shropshire Council meeting next week, following a cabinet decision on September 7 to dispose of the site.

The report, exempt from publication as it concerns the council’s financial and business affairs, appeared on the public agenda for around an hour – alongside a list of the tenancies in place with industrial estate businesses – before it was removed.

The report said: “The industrial estate near Bridgnorth is no longer deemed necessary to the council’s economic development portfolio having been well established and is considered surplus to requirements.”

In the report, strategic asset manager Steve Law said the sale would prevent the council from having to invest money into improving accessibility at the industrial estate. Tenants are aware of the planned sale.

Mr Law said: “The potential disposal of the industrial estate presents an opportunity to reduce the revenue burden for the council together with negating the need for potential significant capital costs in its improvement and maintenance moving forward.

Maintenance

“The council’s asset management planning process has identified this industrial estate as being one of concern in terms of required capital investment in maintenance and presents as a moderate to high risk moving forward in terms of its potential impact on budgets.

“The opportunity to support the new emerging work around the business parks programme would also be seen as very beneficial with the potential to release assets which no longer provide a genuine economic development function with existing long-standing tenants and no significant new demand for businesses in the locality.”

The report says the industrial estate was recently valued at around £1.2 million and brings in £99,000 in annual revenue, costing the council £25,000 a year to run.

The site lies next to Severn Valley Country Park, which is also owned by the council.

Mr Law’s report said: “It is important this amenity is protected moving forward and that any potential disposal of the industrial estate does not impact upon its accessibility or detracts from the visitor experience in the future.”

The report concluded that a “significant programme of investment” would be required to bring parts of the industrial estate in line with current regulations.

Top Stories

More from the Shropshire Star

UK & International News