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Contract signed for housing on old Shrewsbury college site

Shrewsbury | News | Published:

A multi-million pound deal has been completed to transform a former Shropshire college and its grounds into luxury houses and flats.

Contracts have been signed between Shropshire-based residential developer Floreat Homes and Shropshire Council and The Radbrook Foundation which both owned the former Radbrook College site.

The land was previously home to the college, which was set up in 1898, and had been used by Shrewsbury College of Arts and Technology up until 2014.

Floreat Homes will now invest more than £30 million on the development and the town's infrastructure over the next five years.

Though the site was purchased with outline planning consent, work will not commence until spring 2017.

In the meantime Floreat plans to hold a pre-planning consultation with the local community to gauge their views.

They will also work with an award winning architect to draw up a detailed masterplan for the site.

Matthew Hill, head of development at Floreat, said: "We believe that the location, history and existing features of the Radbrook Campus site makes it one of the best addresses in Shrewsbury.

"We are only too aware of the plethora of homogeneous,'identikit' new homes being built in the area, and instead aim to offer the Shrewsbury market an alternative.

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"We seek to dispel the commonly held assumptions that new build homes are poorly designed, cramped and formulaic - by offering bespoke homes, architecturally designed to provide generous space standards that maximise natural light and respond understand how people live."

The existing Victorian Radbrook College building, designed by CR Dalgleish as a Technical College for Girls, will be retained, together with the lodge building and Walker House. Much of the established landscaping will be complemented by additional areas of green space and a natural play area for children.

The number of new homes to be offered for open-market sale has not yet been confirmed, though the site was bought with outline planning permission showing 127 houses and 20 flats.

This includes a 20 per cent allocation of affordable homes that will be retained and managed by Floreat's parent organisation Shropshire Housing Ltd.

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Radbrook Campus represents an unprecedented opportunity for Floreat Homes to showcase an innovative and unconventional approach to development.

Mr Hill added: "There is an unacceptable lack of diversity in the UK new home market at present, and we do not believe that innovation should be restricted to the southern counties or only for those with exceptional wealth.

"Our company vision is to work with, not against communities - recognising that a true sense of 'belonging' can only arise when communal as well as individual needs are considered."

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