Units to let following confirmation of retail trade counter giant

Eddisons is the sole agent on new-build business units now available to let in the latest phase of the Oakwood Business Park in Sawtry, Cambridgeshire following confirmation by the agent’s Huntingdon office that Screwfix has leased over 4,000 sq ft.

With all the freehold opportunities in the phase now sold or under offer, Eddisons are instructed on four units to let currently, a number of which the agent has been appointed to lease by the freehold investors.

Oakwood Business Park is on Old Great North Road in Sawtry, adjacent to the A1(M). It is 8.5 miles from Huntingdon and 8 miles from Peterborough’s Orton Southgate district. The A14 is 7.5 miles from the development.

In addition to Screwfix, Eddisons’ agents advise that the business park’s new-build units have attracted a range of trade related occupiers and owner occupiers.

All the available units to let have allocated parking.

For more information or to arrange a viewing of the remaining units to let at Oakwood Business Park, contact Matthew Hunt at the Huntingdon office of Eddisons, tel 01480 451578, [email protected].

A big start to the year for Huntingdon agency

The beginning of January sees the Huntingdon office of Eddisons acting as the sole agent on behalf of the landlord in launching what its agents describe as a ‘substantial’ industrial instruction in the Cambridgeshire market town of St Ives.

At 44,684 sq ft (4,151.14 sq m), 41 Edison Road on the Somersham Road Industrial Estate is available to let on a new lease.

On a self-contained plot, it’s a detached unit with two connected workshop/production areas totalling 39,621 sq ft (3,680.82 sq m) at ground floor level, with offices at ground and first floor level.

The warehouse/production spaces have, in total, seven roller shutter doors to the rear and the side with a service yard also located to the rear. The office accommodation includes an entrance reception/lobby area, meeting rooms, and a canteen facility.

Somersham Road Industrial Estate is on the northern edge of St Ives and is the main trading park and employment district of the town.

Number 41 Edison Road is on a prominent location on the industrial estate and backs on to Marley Road – a key transport road in St Ives.

Stephen Power, Director, is leading the Eddisons agency on this industrial instruction from the Huntingdon office.

Speaking about 41 Edison Road on its launch this month, he said, “At the close of last year, we commented how the industrial sector has proved pretty resilient for Eddisons in this region and how available properties were still in short supply.

“The challenge for this sector has been the lack of good quality product coming to the market. So when a unit such as this at 41 Edison Road comes forward, we anticipate a strong level of occupier interest.”

Viewing of 41 Edison Road, Somersham Road Industrial Estate, St Ives is strictly by appointment through Eddisons as the sole agent.

To arrange a viewing or for more information about this or any other industrial property available in and around St Ives & Huntingdon, contact Stephen Power at Eddisons Huntingdon, tel 01480 451578, [email protected] or through eddisons.com.

Eddisons’ public sector team adds four new wins to client list

Leeds-headquartered property consultancy Eddisons has added three local authorities and the national regulatory body for MPs to its list of public sector clients.

Javid Patel, head of public sector 

Since gaining approved supplier status on the Government’s Crown Commercial Service (CCS) estate management services framework in 2021 and on the ESPO public sector professional buying organisation in 2022, the firm’s public sector team has rapidly grown the number of councils and other public bodies in its client portfolio.

The City of Lincoln Council, Portsmouth City Council, Rushmoor Borough Council in Hampshire and the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA), the body which regulates and administers all MPs’ business costs and pay, have become the latest organisations to appoint Eddisons’ public sector advisory services.

In Lincoln, Eddisons will advise the city council on the Lincoln Western Growth Corridor, providing strategic development consultancy services for 3,200 new homes, a neighbourhood centre, a business park and transport infrastructure to alleviate congestion.

The firm is providing strategic development consultancy and other input for Portsmouth City Council on its flagship City Centre North master plan. Proposals include 2,300 new homes, public green space and space for new community facilities, retail, hospitality and leisure uses, as well as walking and cycling routes.

Eddisons’ property management team has also been appointed by Rushmoor Borough Council to manage the 375,000 sq ft Kingsmead and the Meads shopping centres in Farnborough on a three-year contract. The contract from IPSA will also see Eddisons provide lease advisory services for MPs’ constituency offices across the UK.

Javid Patel, Eddisons’ head of our public sector strategic advisory team, said: “We are really excited to have added these latest clients to our public sector portfolio. Our approach is always to build collaborative relationships and help bring innovation, including using AI technologies, to aid the quality and speedier delivery of our services.”

He added: “Local authorities and other public sector bodies are increasingly looking to Eddisons for new ideas and direction on capital projects and masterplans and we are building a solid reputation for delivering expertise in areas such as residential, commercial portfolios and town centre regeneration.

“We look forward to growing our market share in the public sector still further as part of our wider strategic business plan.”

Eddisons leads the way as Lincolnshire’s most active property agent

The Lincoln office of Eddisons, incorporating Banks Long & Co, has dominated the Lincolnshire category of a national competition rating the most active property agents across the country when it comes to deals done.


The annual deals competition, run by property research platform, EG Radius, ranks commercial property agencies and individual agents by the volume of space and the number of deals transacted for lettings and sales across all commercial property sectors in the previous year.

The firm’s agents dominated the competition’s individual dealmakers listings for Lincolnshire, occupying eight of the top ten slots, including the top three in which Cameron McRae took the top spot.

Within the rankings for agencies, Eddisons, incorporating Banks Long & Co, was judged as the most active agent in Lincolnshire, having transacted 301,594 sq ft of commercial space last year.

Commenting on the firm’s achievement in the competition, Steve Hawkins, Regional Managing Partner, Eddisons, said, “The fact that we occupy the top slots is a great achievement in what, across twelve months, was a tricky market.

To have so many of our agents in the highest rankings as dealmakers is a real fillip to the firm, as well as a testament to the individuals themselves.

“These competition wins recognise Eddisons’ prolific presence on the ground in Lincolnshire, and the insider knowledge, expertise and focus of our agents when it comes to their markets and pushing deals through for our clients.

Eddisons builds on planning position

Eddisons has made a senior planning appointment to its professional services team in its East & East Midlands region.


Lydia Pravin, MSc, MRTPI, joins as an Associate Planning Director from Brown & Co where she was a senior associate planner in its St Neots office. Prior to that, she was a senior planning officer at South Cambridgeshire District Council.

As a qualified chartered town planner, Lydia also hold a masters degree in urban & regional town planning.

While based in Eddisons’ Peterborough office, where the planning team is headed by its Planning Director, Kate Wood, Lydia will, primarily, work across the firm’s regional office network in the East Midlands and East of England. Additionally, she will provide planning advice to Eddisons other UK officers as required.

Announcing the appointment, Kate Wood said, “Lydia joins us at a time when many local authorities in the region are at key points in their local plan life cycles and reform of the planning system is, once again, in the spotlight at national policy level.

With over a decade in the planning profession, Lydia’s senior experience in both private practice and the public sector brings insight and skills to the Eddisons professional services planning offer that will prove invaluable to the firm’s clients.


For any press queries, please contact:

Kate Wood, Eddisons Peterborough, 01733 897722, [email protected]

New UK HQ strikes ground at Suffolk Business Park

Construction of the new 32,000 sq ft headquarters of Avant Tecno UK is now well underway at Suffolk Business Park, Bury St Edmunds.

Eddisons acted as the sole agent on behalf of the park’s developer, Churchmanor Estates, in helping secure the deal that will see Avant Tecno UK Ltd as the owner-occupier and relocate its HQ operations from Norfolk to Suffolk Business Park.

Avant Tecno UK, which provides multi-functional articulated loaders to the construction and agricultural sectors, is scheduled to move in to its new purpose-built premises this summer.

Suffolk Business Park is a new commercial gateway location in the county being developed at Junction 45 of the A14.

Churchmanor Estates’ development masterplan for the park sees development in four distinct business zones, one of which is allocated for industrial occupiers and is where Avant Tecno UK’s new headquarters premises is located.

Speaking as construction of Avant Tecno UK’s new headquarters got underway, Matt Cloke, Develoment Director at Churchmanor Estates, said, “Avant Tecno are the acknowledged market leader in their sector, and so we are delighted to be asked to work with them to bring their vision for a new bespoke UK HQ, warehouse and showroom.

“This is an important investment not just for Suffolk Business Park but for West Suffolk as well, and we’re looking forward to seeing the project progress over the next nine months.”

For more information about commercial opportunities still available at Suffolk Business Park, Bury St Edmunds, contact Simon Burton, [email protected], tel 01284 702655.

Lincoln office looks to the future with trio of new hires

(L-R) Ashley Humphrey, Jacob Hage, and Jasper Nilsson


The Lincoln office of Eddisons incorporating Banks Long & Co has announced a trio of new appointments this autumn.

Jasper Nilsson has been recruited to the role of Graduate Surveyor and joins from Frasers Group where he was a trainee commercial manager.

He brings retail & leisure sector experience to the firm’s property agency offer in the region.

The second new appointment is Ashley Humphrey. He joins as a Property Management Surveyor, making the move to the commercial property sector after seven years’ in residential lettings with a focus on property management.

Ashley will, initially, work across a range of commercial property disciplines with a view to specialising in the future on attaining the RICS accreditation he is studying for with the backing of the firm.

The final new appointment announced this autumn is Jacob Hage who joins the office for the third of a four-year BSc honours degree course in Building Surveying at Nottingham Trent University.

The Lincoln office has a track record of offering student placement opportunities and it is, according to Tim Bradford, Director, Eddisons incorporating Banks Long & Co, one of which the firm is proud.

In welcoming the new recruits, Tim Bradford said, “All three add something fresh to the firm’s offer in the region.

“We strive to attract new young talent to the business, so we are pleased to have secured these three new recruits who are the up & coming generation of property professionals.”

Should we worry about asbestos as well as RAAC?

As RAAC hits the headlines with asbestos rearing its head along with it, how can our industry weather another building material crisis like the ACM cladding scandal?

Surveys are the order of the day for many schools, hospitals and public buildings across the country after the government confirmed the reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete within hundreds of school buildings was past its lifespan. However, critics are worried that this rushed approach to removing RAAC will aggravate pre-existing asbestos within these areas, exacerbating an already difficult problem.

A combination of a nationwide demand for remediation, the short notice of closing the schools, and the lack of general knowledge around RAAC has made the removal of the product an imperative. However, removing RAAC could disturb underlying asbestos – which was used as insulation for most of the time that RAAC was also being used.

National Education Union leader Daniel Kebede has warned that 90% of schools still contain asbestos, with other spokespeople saying it is more likely to be 80%. Either way it is not a position that schools want to be in at the start of term: battling potentially two dangerous defects and relying on virtual learning once more.

What is concerning is how prevalent RAAC has been used across the country. Early lists have shown that there are huge swells of schools in both Essex and the North East, showing that this is not a geographically-isolated incident. Meaning that the more schools likely to have RAAC, will also be likely to have asbestos.

To calm the media, PM Rishi Sunak has stated that 95% of schools will not be affected by the RAAC “crisis”. But how many public buildings will feel obligated to request surveys to check that their environments are fit for purpose? And how many of them will find asbestos along with RAAC? How will that impact everyday life?

Further down the line, legal experts are concerned that, much like the ACM scandal, building companies and contractors will find themselves in a serious legal battle to prove that they are not responsible for what experts are describing as “a circus”. These materials – RAAC, asbestos, even ACM – were legal when used, so whose fault is it that they were later found to be dangerous?

The public sector can only work with the information they are given, and currently that is direction to have their school tested for RAAC. We can support you from initial diagnosis, and through to remediation. Get in touch for advice and help in planning your next steps.

RAAC report estimates nearly 600 schools at risk of collapse

Schools and Trusts are on high alert today as a government report shows that approximately 38% of all schools in England are at risk of collapse due to inefficient building materials.

The National Audit Office and Department for Education (DfE) have concluded that hundreds of schools across the country are running on borrowed time as reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete has been identified as a major component in the construction of these properties.

What is Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete?

Reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete, or RAAC, was a popular material for construction from the 1950s until the mid-1990s, due to its cheap manufacture and abundant accessibility. However, this is now proving to have been a costly mistake as schools are being shut down due to their lifespan diminishing quickly and the increasing risk of building collapse or failure causing death or serious injury.

The DfE is estimating that over a third of school buildings are past their lifespan, with the NAO calculating that 700,000 children are being taught in schools that require major rebuilding or refurbishment, due to RAAC or other construction failures like asbestos use and ACM.

As we read more of the report, it is evident that changes must be made soon – both in the short-term and strategically. With a cross-party agreement that we should all act now, but how do we do so in such an economically challenging time?

More needs to be done

Gary Benn, director of our Cambridge office, believes that there needs to be more action for all constructions issues – not just RAAC.

Condition Improvement Funding is useful but isn’t enough, and the PSDS isn’t targeted at the right buildings in our school stock.

Different mechanisms need to be designed, with DESNZ and the DfE collaborating more to create a more cohesive strategy with Trusts.”

What should we do

Before anything, estates managers should contact a professional as soon as possible if they believe their estate to be affected. Our RICS-qualified surveyors can assure you on whether your buildings are at risk of a large range of building or construction defect.

All public buildings are to be checked, as part of a separate government enquiry. The estate itself is worth £158 billion and includes schools and Academies. Find out whether you are part of that estate, and make sure to look into how the Government can help to support you both financially and logistically during this scheme.

Eddisons has supported hundreds of clients in issues similar to this, and currently works with dozens of Academies and Trusts to improve their properties and estates strategies with established knowledge and innovative methodologies.

For more information on how you can protect your buildings and the people who work and learn there, read our previous blog, or get in touch now.

Eddisons secures over £20m for school building improvement projects

Millthorpe School Eddisons

Eddisons secures over £20m for school building improvement projects

We are delighted to announce we’ve secured more than £20m of funding to improve buildings at schools across the UK in the latest round of the Government’s Condition Improvement Fund (CIF).

Our education sector specialist team has raised more than £200m in school funding over recent years and the latest round of secured funding includes £4m for school building projects in Yorkshire, £1.6m for heating upgrade projects in Gosport and Southampton and £650,000 for fire safety works at Corley Academy SEN school in Coventry.

Ian Harrington, head of our specialist education team, said: “This is another year of fantastic results for both our clients and the team. However, the success also highlights once again the fact that education is one of the more poorly funded sectors, with 2,000 projects unsuccessful in their bids in this round of funding alone.

“We will continue to work with those schools and academies that were unsuccessful, to offer guidance on future bids, as well as offering advice on other funding opportunities that are available. With the total CIF pot remaining unchanged on last year, despite base rate inflation being at 11% and construction inflation nearer 30%, it was one the most fiercely competitive rounds of funding we’ve experienced.”

The CIF programme is an annual round of bidding under which academy schools and colleges can apply for funding for the upkeep and improvement of their buildings and to fund expansion projects for schools that have been rated good or outstanding by Ofsted. In total, the Department for Education received funding requests for over 3,000 projects this year, with 1,033 projects across 859 academies being allocated a share of the £456m.

Ian added: “The CIF bidding procedure is highly complex and Eddisons’ education team   have built up huge knowledge and experience over the years to help deliver successful bids and projects that make a real difference to schools and to the people who study and work in them.

“Every year the process of submitting a successful CIF bid becomes ever more competitive and we are really pleased to say that we have maintained our position as a key adviser to the education sector, with an excellent success rate for our bids.”

The successful projects will all get underway shortly and will be project managed by Eddisons.

If your project was not successful we offer a free audit of your bid so you can apply the insights in any future applications, please click here to find out more.

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