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Go-ahead for Benham Valence revamp

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The estate, including the grade II* listed building of the same name, located in Speen, was purchased by businessmen Harry Marriott and Michael Fresson for £5m in 2011 and the pair have since put forward several applications with architects Sutton-Grffin to restore the mansion building and surrounding land.
The applications included the creation of a specialist medical park, further residential dwellings and stables, with potential for a riding school, and the restoration of the mansion house, which was until recently used as offices by IT firm 2e2 before they went into administration, and the replacement of the office blocks, built by Norsk Data in the 1980s, for continued commercial use.
One application remains outstanding, for a change of use from office use to document storage, and despite a decision being expected from the district council in mid-February it is yet to be approved or refused.
Despite showing great support for the earlier proposals, Speen Parish Council recommended objection for the latest application.
Councillor Anthony Newell-Hart said: “My experience of document storage is that you get a lot of traffic coming out of that.
“It [can be] 24 hours, we need to know more information, document storage can be quite a disturbance.”
Despite this, the property’s owners have said that they are pleased with the outcome so far, yet remained tight-lipped on the next stage of the decision process.
A spokesman for the owners, who asked not to be named, said: “This is good news that we have achieved planning permission to restore Benham Valence.
“We have a number of options open to us.
“We will now be considering the best option to secure its future.”

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