Sale deal approved for landmark River Wear building

DONE DEAL: Allan Cook and Neil McMillan at Freeman's Reach overlooking Milburngate House.

DONE DEAL: Allan Cook and Neil McMillan at Freeman's Reach overlooking Milburngate House.

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A DEAL has been done to buy a landmark building on the banks of the River Wear.

The team behind the new Freeman’s Reach development in Durham has announced it has bought Milburngate House as part of its vision to regenerate the city’s Northern Quarter.

The consortium is now looking at what it can do with the site to give Durham a boost.

It is due to begin a consultation process with key stakeholders and the public to share ideas before it puts together any proposals for the site, which is currently occupied by National Savings and Investments (NS&I).

Its 395 staff are due to move to Freeman’s Reach, while a second phase will keep 800 jobs in the city and also feature a small riverside restaurant and kiosk, which will help give visitors arriving by a coach a warmer welcome.

An electricity generator powered by an Archimedean screw is already in place and will provide more than 75 per cent of the power required for the former ice rink site, which is being developed by Arlington Real Estate, support services company, Carillion and Richardson Capital,

Neil McMillan, development director of Carillon Developments, said: “Securing Milburngate House is a major milestone in the regeneration of Durham City.

“The scale of this site, its riverside frontage and fantastic views up to the World Heritage site make for a truly outstanding development opportunity, which will have a significant economic impact on Durham and add to the character of the city.

“We are looking forward to working with the local authority, key stakeholders and the public in Durham throughout the development of our ideas for the site.”

Allan Cook, managing director of Arlington Real Estate, said: “With the successful regeneration of Freeman’s Reach nearing completion, our team has demonstrated the high standard of development we can bring to Durham.

“At almost seven acres, the MiIburngate House site represents a huge opportunity for us to bring forward something really exciting and I am confident that when our plans for the site have been finalised the results on the ground will bear this out.”