Cheltenham offices scheme gets the go-ahead

Posted on by John Cronin

Plans for a controversial, multi-million pound office scheme in Cheltenham have been given the go-ahead at a recent council meeting.

honeybourne placeConsent has been given (planning application) for the mixed-use Honeybourne Place (pictured) scheme in Jessop Avenue despite the proposed building being called a “monstrosity” by local campaigners.

Commercial property developers Formal Investments are behind the £10m scheme. The 6-storey building will offer 75,000 sq ft of floor space of which approximately 37,000 sq ft will be dedicated for office use. The building will also include residential, retail and leisure space.

Formal Investments has announced that a pre-let agreement for around 50% of the office space has already been secured. Steinhoff International, whose UK brands include Harvey’s, Bensons For Beds, Relyon and Sleepmaster has agreed to the pre-let. The company already has plans to relocate to Festival House, another Cheltenham office scheme in Jessop Avenue owned by Formal Investments.

Some local residents groups have opposed the proposed development. Dr Richard Hayman, Cheltenham General Hospital, speaking at the committee meeting on behalf of the St George’s Road residents said: “Anyone with vision can see that this will be the 2011 equivalent of the 1960 monstrosities that continue to blight our townscape.”

However, Nicholas King, Formal Investments, describes the development as (pdf link): “a major investment for Cheltenham … An investment of this size also represents a significant vote of confidence for the town and the local economy”.

The building is to be constructed on land currently used as a private car park. The glass-fronted building, which will incorporate a range of sustainable energy features, is expected to achieve a BREEAM rating of ‘ Excellent’.

Architects for the scheme are Roberts Limbrick. Marketing agents are Nick Bevan Consulting.

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