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19 August, 2020

Update on Newby Wiske

The Commissioner wants to provide an update on the sale process for Newby Wiske, the former North Yorkshire Police headquarters.

The financial impact of the decision to relocate North Yorkshire Police headquarters in June 2015 needs to be assessed in terms of all the changes that have led from that undertaking.

The move to Alverton Court, North Yorkshire Police’s new headquarters, along with the move of Northallerton Police Station into the building and the co-location with North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service is saving taxpayers in total around £1.1 million pounds a year – £600,000 per year solely from the move of the police headquarters.

It was expected the sale of Newby Wiske would conclude shortly after the move to Alverton Court of the police headquarters was completed in September 2017. However, clearly, that has not proved to be the case due to the judicial reviews, revised planning decisions and other legal issues – all of which have been out of the control of the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.

The costs of continuing to own and maintain the building are estimated to be around £25,000 per month – the majority of which is paid in business rates to Hambleton Borough Council.

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the purchasers of Newby Wiske asked to extend the date they would take ownership from 1 May 2020 for up to two years. There has been no change to the agreed sales price and the buyer has additionally agreed to pay for the costs incurred in maintaining the building from 1 May 2020.

Given the approximate £600,000 per year savings from the move, set against the approximate £300,000 annual running cost of Newby Wiske since the move, there has already been a substantial cost saving for taxpayers and now the purchaser has taken over paying the ongoing running costs of the former headquarters, these savings will increase.