£55million loan for former Welwyn Garden City Shredded Wheat factory development

PUBLISHED: 12:25 07 February 2018 | UPDATED: 12:40 07 February 2018

Demolition of the Shredded Wheat Factory in Welwyn Garden City continues. Picture: Danny Loo

Demolition of the Shredded Wheat Factory in Welwyn Garden City continues. Picture: Danny Loo

Danny Loo Photography 2018

Finance provider Urban Exposure Limited is providing a £55million loan to assist with the development of the former Shredded Wheat factory in Welwyn Garden City.

Urban Exposure originally provided £41.1million of funding for the acquisition of the site from Tesco in June 2017 .

It is now providing a further £13.9m to assist with the development of the 11.4 acre site.

Developer Plutus Estates (WGC) Limited is the underlying borrower and ZM Land & Capital is the development manager for Plutus Estates (WGC) Limited.

Urban Exposure is providing senior debt financing, which means that it must be for the first company to be repaid should the developer go out of business.

In March 2017, Tesco was granted planning permission for 850 homes on the old factory site, potentially including up to 80 care home or assisted living units, various retail, commercial, office and leisure uses together with ancillary amenity space.

Urban Exposure financed the original purchase of the entire site from Tesco three months later.

Then on January 17, Plutus Estates (WGC) Ltd and the Metropolitan Housing Trust submitted a fresh proposal for nearly 1,500 new homes, a wellness centre, employment space and a new civic building.

•MORE: Shredded Wheat plans submitted

Partner at Urban Exposure Mike McMahon said: “We are thrilled to be financing this exciting development in one of the UK’s leading Garden Cities.

“As London’s supply-demand imbalance continues to grow, locations such as Welwyn Garden City have an increasingly important role to play in offering affordable accommodation with convenient transport to the capital’s working districts.

“Redeveloping this landmark site will create a significant number of new homes and have a positive economic impact on the area so we are pleased to be playing our part.

“After a strong end to 2017, we have entered the New Year with good momentum and a well-stocked pipeline of further projects that we want to finance.

“Despite the headwinds from Brexit-related uncertainty, there are plenty of encouraging signs for the UK housing market at the start of the year, particularly in high growth regions we are targeting.

“We look forward to continuing to support further high quality developments across the UK and updating with further project funding news very soon.”

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