Former Aylesbury Vale tobacco factory earmarked for development

The derelict site of a former tobacco machine factory has been earmarked for a new housing development believed to be coming before the council this year.
The site in SaundertonThe site in Saunderton
The site in Saunderton

The former Molins Tobacco Machinery site at Saunderton Business Park on Summerleys Road is being considered for “sensitively designed housing” by developer St. Congar.

A planning application for the demolition of all remaining buildings and construction of 212 properties was refused in 2015.

A subsequent appeal on the matter was dismissed in 2017.

Now it appears St. Congar is planning to bring a “revised planning application for a reduced scheme” of 130 homes before Buckinghamshire Council.

The developer says its proposal “is being prepared for submission in 2020”.

The more than 50-acre site of the former cigarette making machine manufacturer currently lies in ruin.

The majority of the industrial buildings were removed as part of planning consent for a 78,000 sqm data centre, which was never built.

All that remains are some rundown offices facing Summerleys Road.

The many windows of the remaining buildings are mostly smashed, there is graffiti scrawled on walls everywhere and the vegetation that surrounds it is high and overgrown.

Signs across the entrance warn the public against going on site but a metal gate lies partly open making unauthorised entry on foot possible.

There is evidence of fly-tipping everywhere with rubbish, electrical equipment and furniture scattered among the dense vegetation.

Locals at the time were open to “redevelopment of the site for a mix of uses such as residential, retirement housing, small scale business units and community facilities,” according to the Bledlow-cum-Saunderton Neighbourhood Plan (June 2017).

St. Congar declined to comment.