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Exeter set for 2,500 jobs boost as developers buy historic park

24 February 2020

A luxury residential and commercial developer has bought an historic estate to kick-start a major project - and a huge 2,500 jobs boost for the city.

Burrington Estates today announced the purchase of Winslade Park, in Clyst St Mary, which is set in 86 acres of parkland on the outskirts of Exeter.

The acquisition, which includes an 18th century Grade II-listed manor house, is the first step towards plans to provide 150 new homes and 125,000 ft of commercial office space at the heart of a new purpose-built community.

It will also be home to a £10m leisure complex with fitness studios, gym, spa facilities, beauty salons and a swimming pool.

Mark Edworthy, group managing director at Burrington Estates, said: “Winslade Park provides the perfect platform for us to express our vision as it is a development that will genuinely create an enduring community and improve quality of life of all people living and working in this stunning parkland setting.”

Burrington’s purchase of the site, which has been unoccupied since 2015 and was previously owned by insurance giants Aviva, comes as a result of a major collaboration between key partners.

Former Exeter Chiefs and England international rugby player, Tom Johnson, will run the leisure complex under his Tom Johnson Leisure brand.

Real estate agents Lambert Smith Hampton and corporate advisers James Lang LaSalle (JLL) brokered the sale and East Devon District Council provided “crucial” support for the plans.

Specialist lender Together, which provides finance for residential and commercial property, agreed a £7m bridging loan for Burrington to buy the mixed-use site.

Ritchie Watson, lending director at Together, said: “When we first saw the ambitious plans for this mixed-use campus development at Winslade Park we were impressed. It will provide fantastic new, luxury homes on the same site as high-quality offices and leisure facilities.

“In addition, the major project will bring new 2,500 jobs, having a great impact on the wider city and region, and we were delighted to have been able to provide finance to support the impressive scheme.”

Burrington Estates revealed its £80m vision to re-invigorate the historic site in October.*

This includes buildings with the highest possible EPCA energy ratings and renewable energy generation throughout the development, including electric vehicle charging points.

Council planners have already granted permission for much of the proposed development, with further applications due to be submitted early next month.

A public consultation has been launched already and reparation and refurbishment work is set to start at the end of March.


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