Dozens of council assets set to be sold including car parks, farm buildings and an industrial estate

The council is looking to raise much-needed cash by flogging a long list of small and large properties across the borough, reports Grace Howarth, Local Democracy Reporter

Montagu Industrial Estate (credit Google)
Montagu Industrial Estate (credit Google)

Enfield Council is set to sell off numerous property assets in a bid to raise cash including an industrial estate, three car parks and buildings at two farms.

A report presented to cabinet last week explained the council was reviewing the performance of assets on a continuous basis to ensure the highest return on its investments.

The list of assets considered for sale are either deemed no longer necessary for “operational requirements”, not “fit for purpose” or are said to be “underperforming”.

Montagu Industrial Estate in Edmonton is one of the more significant properties going up for sale. The 29-acre site is undergoing a redevelopment that is yet to be finished. The first phase, comprising nine industrial units with 60,000sqft of space, was completed in early 2022.

The second phase of the Montagu Industrial Estate redevelopment scheme was one of the projects cut last year when the council’s ten-year capital programme was reduced by £267million.

Slopers Pond Farmstead, located just to the north of Hadley Wood, comprises a farmhouse and numerous agricultural buildings and is also listed for sale along with Beechbarn Farmstead south of The Ridgeway, near Botany Bay.

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Also up for sale are three car parks – at Fairfield Road in Edmonton, Glyn Road in Southbury, and Ponders End High Street – plus Crown Road Lorry Park.

Several cottages in the grounds of Trent Park are listed, as are six caretaker’s houses and a former caretaker’s hut.

The assets listed in the report are part of a ‘disposals programme’ and have been split into two tranches, with sales planned between now and 2026. Further tranches are planned over the next ten years as more land and properties are reviewed.

The report states changes in legislation are “shaping” the council’s asset base, such as government regulations which set a minimum energy efficiency level for domestic private rented properties. 

Another factor is said to be the “adverse hangover” of the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as “significant increases” in interest rates, inflation and the “shortfall of funding” from the government. This has led to a “need to focus” on increasing cash flows.

The report states the money received from sold assests must by regulation be spent on the council’s capital programme, “transformation projects”, or for the repayment of external debt.

The report concludes: “The proceeds obtained from these sales will deliver capital receipts for the council thereby helping generally to fund council services which contribute to a strong and healthy community.”

The council has come under increasing financial pressure in recent years. In February the council set its “most challenging ever” budget for 2024/25, closing a budget gap which once stood at £39m. In order to achieve this, over £16m of savings were agreed in addition to a 5% rise in council tax.

The total value of the assets being put up for sale has not been disclosed.

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