Richardson Barberry selected to deliver £140m business park

Jonathan Robinson of Barberry Developments.

Richardson Barberry has been selected as the development partner to deliver a £140 million business park – with more than 1.75 million sq ft of accommodation – in the North East, it was announced at MIPIM today (Thursday 15th March).

Richardson Barberry has signed an agreement as retained development partner with joint venture company Forrest Park Newton Aycliffe Limited for the expansion of Aycliffe Business Park on the 116 acre Forrest Park site with potential to accommodate a rail freight interchange.

The announcement was made at MIPIM – the world’s biggest property development and investment show in Cannes.

A planning application for Forrest Park, at County Durham, will be submitted shortly to Durham County Council. The proposals include a range of business, industrial / distribution units varying in size from 30,000 sq ft to 500,000 sq ft, a trade park consisting of 11 units from 5,000 sq ft to 10,000 sq ft, and ancillary amenity uses including roadside food offerings / public house and restaurant.

Forrest Park – which has attracted £13 million funding from the Local Enterprise Partnership – could create 3,200 jobs and deliver a gross value added economic boost to the area of £495 million over the next 10 to 15 years. A planning decision is expected later this year.

Jonathan Robinson, Barberry Developments director, said: “We are very pleased to have been selected as development partner for this prestigious project and we are excited at the prospect of delivering one of the North East’s premier business parks.

“Working alongside Durham County Council, the Forrest family and the Local Enterprise Partnership, we will create a business park that provides a wide range of high quality accommodation that will attract major investment and jobs to the region.”

Cllr Carl Marshall, Durham County Council’s cabinet member for regeneration, said: “Providing land for developments like this is a critical part of supporting the creation of more and better jobs for our residents and the appointment of a delivery partner is the next piece of the jigsaw in bringing these to fruition. Richardson Barberry has an established track record of success in this area and we very much look forward to seeing this project progress.”

Aycliffe Business Park is already home to around 500 companies and around 10,000 employees. The preparatory groundworks, site infrastructure including new substation, service connections and highways improvements known as the Forrest Park enabling works began in 2016 and have now been completed.

Jonathan Robinson added: “The LEP funding clearly illustrates a valuable commitment to fast-tracking the new infrastructure improvements, including a new 24MW primary substation, connecting services, and a new highways access that will enable us to bring forward the development pipeline and investment necessary to attract occupiers and new jobs to the North East. The LEP’s commitment has already provided comfort to several local, regional and international businesses we are speaking to, illustrating Forrest Park’s imminent delivery and opportunity to provide them with a suitable business premises that can satisfy their occupational requirements.”

Ben Holmes, director on behalf of Richardson, said: “We are delighted to be working alongside both new and existing joint venture partners to deliver Forrest Park.

“This will be our fourth major project in the region in recent years, having already delivered two phases at Freemans Reach in Durham, and adding to our existing Milburngate project. Richardson and Barberry have a successful and longstanding relationship that spans over 35 years, having completed numerous developments together. We are very much looking forward to working together again delivering a circa 1.75millions sq ft scheme at Forrest Park.”

Richardson Barberry has recently started construction of the first phase of a multi-million pound business park in the South West. The phase 1 construction of a speculative development of five mid-box industrial units, totaling 170,000 sq ft is underway at the 40-acre site in Bristol, which was acquired by Richardson Barberry late last year.

Located at Central Park, Western Approach, the development will provide the final industrial phase of the already highly successful 350-acre park.