Otterpool Park Update: Council project £193 million profit for Otterpool

In a 54 page document, Folkestone & Hythe District Council have set out the Draft – Otterpool Park Business Plan for discussion by the Overview & Scrutiny Committee on the 1st Dec 2020 (Item 6).

Of course, the granular financial details of the Draft – Otterpool Park Business Plan will be discussed behind closed doors, as per Item seven on the agenda.

The LLP will be asking for the council to release funding to it, namely £5 million on 1st April 2021 and the facility for a further £70 million over the subsequent 3 to 5 years as required for infrastructure and related investment.

In headline terms the business plan sets out an approach whereby the LLP acting as a master developer and principally, as stated above, funded through land parcel sales would generate around £190 million of profit over the life of the scheme (modelled over a 28 year delivery period).

The draw-down of funds will be linked to key milestones contained in a separate detailed Funding Agreement which will be the subject of expert advice to be commissioned by the Director of Corporate Services (the S151 Officer of the Council).

Capital receipts will result from the selling of serviced plots to housebuilders in stages (between 150 & 400 at a time), some receipts will be reinvested in the project and some will be payments to the Council to enable the repayment of loans to the company and to support improved Council services.

The timescale and expenditure of the enabling infrastructure will be controlled by the market absorption of the completed units. We have assumed that the market can absorb 300 units per annum (234 private units). On this basis the 8,500 houses can be delivered over 28 years, and assumes.  Parcels are sold of 150 to 400 plots, as we said earlier.

The LLP is presently owned by the Council and by the Otterpool Park Development Company Limited (“the Limited Company”). The Limited Company is itself wholly owned by the Council. The ownership structure is  as below.

Day to day leadership of the LLP is provided by John Bunnett and Andy Jarrett. The board have delegated most day to day decisions to them, although John and Andy naturally keep the board apprised of what is going on. They also are the primary link between the LLP and the owners – the Council and the Limited Company. John and Andy are responsible and answerable to the board for the delivery of the business plan.

The following staff will be appointed on a secondment basis for a term of three years initially:

  • John Bunnett – Managing director

  • Andy Jarrett – Planning director

  • Julia Wallace –Masterplanning and Design Manager

  • David Shore – Planning Manager

  • Tess Luetchford – Community Service Delivery Manager (former MP for Gloucester) and wife of former FHDC Comms Manager Mark Luetchford

  • Donna Brace – Project coordinator (Previous employee of Ashford Borough Council)

More to follow

The Shepway Vox Team

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