New Home for Firms

The needs of your growing business in north Oxfordshire can be helped by CHIP partners and their very strong local networks. In the example below, Ben Jackson of Bicester Chamber of Commerce contributed excellent local knowledge....

Extract taken from the Bicester Advertiser :-

"Four firms who faced closure and the loss of 40 jobs after being forced to leave the site one had occupied for more than 150 years have moved into a new home.

In a dramatic 11th hour bid, three of the firms bought a former garage in Souldern, tying up the deal within three days of viewing the site to pip another bidder to the post.

Coal merchant A E Prentice, building reclamation firm Burgess and Sons, McGregor Railway Services and K Scaffolding were given notice to leave Station Approach to make way for a car park for Bicester Village.

All four firms faced an uncertain future after planning permission to build a new base at farmland off Akeman Street, Chesterton, near Bicester, was thrown out.  They employed a land agent to help find a suitable site in Bicester, but none was available or it was too expensive.

But thanks to Cherwell District Council's economic officer, Steven Newman, three of the four firms have moved to a new home, at the former Volvo garage, off the B4100 at Souldern.

Adam Burgess of Burgess and Sons, said the firms bought the site at the end of April 2009 and moved in early June.  He said "It was a Monday morning and all of us were effectively comtemplating finishing.

Steven Newman said 'there's a place in Souldern, it's already an existing employment site, go and have a look', which we did.  We looked at it on Tueday, then it was a contract race.

My solicitor came up from London to Bicester at 5.30am, we all signed the paperwork and he zoomed off.  Buy open of business the deal was done.  We saw it and bought it in three days."

Editors Comment :-

"It was great to hear Adam Burgess and colleagues have found a new home.

The past few months have certainly been stressful for the four business owners and their staff who faced an uncertain future.

Thanks to the tenacity of Steve Newman, Cherwell's economic officer, the firms were able to find suitable premises.

It was amazing that they were able to see the yard and sign on the dotted line within just three days. 

After a busy few months including moving from a site where one firm had been based for nearly 150 years, hopefully things will start to get back to normal. 

It is good to have some positive news about successful businesses, and we wish them well for the future."

Extracts taken form the Bicester Advertiser