I should say that I was hoping that visitors might get a trip around the site. I’m happy to say my curiosity was satiated. Although not entirely, as I’d have liked to wander around on foot, especially as the site was secret for many years. There’s not a lot to see, many buildings are in a poor state of repair, and seem to be full of very ordinary cars. The buildings in better condition house Longcross Film Studios, although we saw nothing of any filming activity. Well, nothing that we recognised.
This proposal is an improvement on the earlier plan, which was solely an office park. This proposal includes around 150-200 homes and some public buildings. So, certainly an improvement there.
The only plan in the exhibition I saw that wasn’t either in the brochure, or the website, was the one above. The area in brown and red signify existing buildings, roads and hard standing. The items in dark blue, and grey are the planned offices and houses. From this plan it’s possible to see how much of the site is being returned to green space, either as a SANG or leisure space.
Looking at the plans, there appear to be 12 office blocks, with the potential to house 4,000 staff. I was curious as to who the likely occupiers might be. Currently the developer is still marketing the site, and there’s no announcement as to who might take office space. With the current state of the UK and world economies it’s a confident business that’s prepared to relocate.
To create the minimum traffic impact on local roads in Surrey Heath, I’d hoped that they might have secured businesses where most staff arrived by train, or that had relocated from West London meaning that staff arriving by car would mostly be using the M3/M25.
A useful first introduction into the consultation for this development.