Withdrawal of renovation plans for the old tobacco machine factory near Aylesbury

Plans to renovate part of a former home tobacco machine factory site have been pulled – amid claims the developer is ‘hiding something’.

Greystoke and ERLP have withdrawn a planning application for part of the former Molins Tobacco Machinery site on Haw Lane in Saunderton.

It had described the demolition and clearing of existing industrial buildings (2,245 m²) to allow residential redevelopment of up to nine new market houses.

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Part of the Saunderton site

Vehicle access from Haw Lane, internal roads, public open space and parking were also provided.

And while no explanation for the recent removal is given by Greystoke and ERLP, a local has claimed the developer submitted a “misleading” application and may be considering putting up to 180 homes on the site, given the number of hectares he owns.

They said it should outline its full intent, adding that locals might be in favor because “something needs to be done with the site”.

The site of the former cigarette machine manufacturer has been in ruins for years.

Most of the industrial buildings were removed as part of planning permission for a 78,000m² data center, which was never built.

A planning application for the demolition of all remaining buildings and the construction of 212 properties failed in 2015. A subsequent appeal was rejected in 2017.

In 2020, developer St. Congar also revealed that it planned to introduce an app for 130 homes.

Also, in December last year, a worker from TMT Construction confirmed that they had been hired to clean up the site when asked what they were doing.

Mr. Lewis Stringfellow of Saunderton: “This planning application is a misleading document and should be treated as such.

“This application…should be considered on the basis that on one hectare the applicant seeks to erect nine houses.

“I believe their documentation points out that they own about 20 hectares and that they may be planning to develop about nine times 20 hectares. [which] equals 180 houses on this site.

“Greystoke should provide an outline of their plans for the whole site. The local community might be happy with that.

He added: “We all know that something has to be done with the site. What is being proposed is not an acceptable approach.

The current approach just means that there is mistrust from the start of the process, because why would you do it this way unless you have something to hide? »

“I write officially to acknowledge that this request has been withdrawn,” the council said. “No further action will be taken and no formal decision will be taken on this matter by the authority.”

The developer has been approached for comment.

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