Knowsley's Huyton bid aims to support a £127m town centre regeneration strategy. Credit: Knowsley Council

Knowsley progresses pair of land deals  

The council is selling 56 acres south of Cherryfield Drive in Kirkby to housebuilders Barratt Developments and David Wilson Homes and acquiring a clutch of retail units in Huyton town centre to advance its £127m redevelopment plans. 

Land south of Cherryfield Drive

Barrett and David Wilson’s plan for the site comprises 796 new homes. Of those, 73 are earmarked as affordable and would be developed by Livv Housing. 

A 66-home affordable extra care scheme, developed by Housing 21, also features within the scheme. 

Upon completion, the council would make around £1.4m a year in council tax receipts, it said.

Countryside Properties, Vistry Partnerships, Engie/Bellway, Lovell, Keepmoat, Taylor Wimpey, Persimmon and McDermott Homes also bid for the site. 

Barrett and David Wilson scored 87% out of 100% on the evaluation. Vistry Partnerships came in second place with a score of 73%. 

The joint venture has now been granted an exclusivity agreement for a period of six months to allow it time to carry out further due diligence. 

Following the expiry of the proposed exclusivity period, the joint venture would be required to confirm the bid, according to a report to Knowsley Council’s cabinet. 

The value of the bid was not disclosed.

Huyton retail units 

Knowsley Council plans to acquire the long leasehold on 52-70 Derby Road in Huyton town centre from Mineflow Investments in order to make environmental improvements along Westmorland Road and Derby Road as well as enhancing pedestrian links in the area.

The units comprise retail space on the ground floor and office space above and Iceland is the anchor tenant. Betfred and Bright House are among the other occupiers. 

The council owns the freehold of the plot and plans to buy the long lease on the 0.6-acre site, which also includes service yards bounded by Westmorland Road.  

The lease is for a term of 125 years from 27 July 1981. Mineflow pays £41,000 a year in rent. 

Knowsley has no plans to repurpose the site, but says it could be eventually be redeveloped as part of the council’s long-term regeneration plans for the broader Huyton Village area.

Knowsley is currently on the hunt for a developer to carry out the 10-year transformation, which includes a new 81,000 sq ft council headquarters.

The purchase of the Derby Road shops could be funded from Public Works Loan Board. Annual debt costs would be fully serviced from the rental income from the purchased units, with any surplus income would then contribute to the overall costs of the regeneration of Huyton Village, according to the council.

The value of the acquisition was not disclosed.

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