Fortis Living sells speculative development to HoW College

Fortis Park

Commercial agents Harris Lamb have sold a commercial building in Worcester to the Heart of Worcestershire College.

The college paid in excess of £1.5 million for an element of Fortis Park, a 15,000 sq ft speculatively-built development constructed on behalf of housing registered housing provider Fortis Living.

Neil Harris, Director at Harris Lamb, said: “We have been heavily involved in this project from the start, as we initially won a tender two years ago to identify a site for a new office for Fortis.

“Upon doing so, we oversaw a planning application to build both a new 15,000 sq ft headquarters and this commercial building, on the understanding that Fortis Living would then place it on the market to address the shortage of space within Worcestershire.

“Our building consultancy team has now project managed the construction of the building, and we have been in conversations with potential buyers for some time.

“The Heart of Worcestershire College has successfully secured the entire building for a figure in excess of £1.5 million, and is seeking a change of planning consent to training and education. This is fantastic news for Worcester, bringing new jobs and training opportunities to the city.”

Harris Lamb is also responsible for marketing Fortis Living’s former HQ in Malvern.

Neil added: “This project is a prime example of how our in-house teams work closely together to ensure a seamless, swift process from start to finish on behalf of our clients.”

The Heart of Worcestershire College is the largest further education college in the county.

Richard Grounds, Group Commercial Director for the organisation, said: “Fortis is delighted to have secured the sale to HoW College, as we share a commitment to improving training and life-chances for young people in Worcestershire.”

Nicki Williams, Deputy CEO & Vice Principal Corporate & Resources for Heart of Worcester College, said: “A new  engineering centre supported by Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (WLEP) is being developed to support increased demand from employers to tackle a shortage of engineering skills in the area.

“Investment in this engineering and plumbing centre at Heart of Worcestershire College demonstrates our commitment to improving skills and training for our learners and apprentices, which is central to boosting economic growth across the county. We are delighted to be located alongside Fortis and look forward to strengthening our links as we develop and launch our new centre in the Autumn.

“Local businesses are demanding more highly-qualified engineers in relevant disciplines needed for the specialist engineering and manufacturing sectors we have in the area. The centre is in a prime position to work closely with local employers to respond to their needs by giving students access to state-of-the-art equipment and training via the creation of bespoke teaching environments. This important development is being led by Harris and Associates with work carried out by Leon’s.”

Fortis merged with Waterloo Housing Group in October 2018 to form the new Platform Housing Group. Platform has 44,000 homes and operates across the Midlands.