Trade park plan ‘will create 50 jobs’ pledge

An artists impression of what the trade park may look like
An artists impression of what the trade park may look like

PLANS that could create 50 new jobs by building a trade park on a disused food factory site have been put forward.

Backers claim a planning application for the former Kerry site in Gatehouse Close – which politicians have previously said could be used for a new civic centre or for a park and ride base – will give businesses a shot in the arm if it is approved.

The site is owned by Aylesbury Vale Estates, a company which Aylesbury Vale District Council owns a 50 per cent share of.

Company principal Graham Cole said that if approved, the trade park would sell materials for building companies.

He told the Herald: “We’ve done the research to make sure there’s the demand for it.

“It’s not retail in the sense of being a supermarket, it would be a trade centre, and by that we’re talking about tile shops and builder’s merchants, that kind of thing.”

Last year the factory building on the site was demolished after the owners ruled that the buildings were not fit for purpose.

Mr Cole said: “Kerrys was a big, monolithic building which wasn’t fit or suitable for anything else, we really didn’t have any choice.

“We couldn’t reuse that building.”

The application is for 5,618 sq ft of trade park buildings, with car parking.

Last year former district councillor Maria Butler, Liberal Democrat, said the site would be ideal for an entertainment venue.

And Councillor Bill Chapple, Conservative, said it could be the base for a park and ride scheme serving Aylesbury town centre.

Mr Cole said: “The number of units that are proposed is eight and it is calculated that these will create circa 50 new jobs in a scheme that will improve facilities for the commercial/industrial/trade core of Aylesbury.”

Food manufacturer Kerry pulled out of the town in 2009, and the site has been vacant since.