Biggleswade 560,000-sq-ft industrial development could mean 1,400 new jobs

Stratton Business Park in Biggleswade. Picture: Central Beds Council

Stratton Business Park in Biggleswade. Picture: Central Beds Council - Credit: Archant

Up to 1,400 jobs could come to Biggleswade after planning permission was granted for 560,000 sq ft of new industrial space in the town.

Phase four of Stratton Business Park, between Bibby Distribution and the A1, is set to open for business by the end of 2020.

Negotiations between Central Bedfordshire Council and London-based developer IDI Gazeley had been stalled for some years before an agreement was signed yesterday.

Councillor Nigel Young, the council’s member for business and regeneration, said: “We are delighted to be working with IDI Gazeley to attract business into the area.

“This significant expansion will cement Stratton Business Park as a thriving strategic employment location within Central Bedfordshire.

“The park now looks set to provide many more skilled job opportunities for the residents of Biggleswade and surrounding area.”

Permission to develop the 30-acre plot is conditional on a section 106 agreement under which Gazeley must contribute £25,000 towards council landscaping work.

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The plans will create 35,400 sq ft of office space and car parking alongside 500,000 sq ft of distribution space, which could be available in one, two or five units.

The council drew up a local development order for the park in 2015 that enables certain specific developments without the need for planning permission, which the authority says has helped ensure businesses stay and grow in Biggleswade.

Existing employers at Stratton include construction, agriculture and refrigeration producer Leibherr, foods firm Jordans Dorset Ryvita, Smiths Metal Centres and Quest Automotive.

Planning permission was granted in 2015 for phases five and six of the business park, and development on phase five – north-east of the site – is already underway after the council completed infrastructure works.

The phase six plot, east of the park, has been sold to logistics developer db Symmetry for future expansion.