Salamanca Group completes the acquisition of the former Royal Ordnance Factory, Bridgwater site from BAE Systems

With low-carbon, on-site energy production at its core, the 635-acre brownfield site will be developed into SW England’s leading commercial and business centre.

LONDON, 17th NOVEMBER, Salamanca Group, the London-based Merchant Banking business, has completed the acquisition of the 635-acre site currently known as Huntspill Energy Park in Somerset. Located just off junction 23 (Puriton) of the M5, and approximately 15 miles east of the Hinkley Point C development, the size and location of the site makes it one of the most strategically important land parcels in the UK today.

Forming part of the multi-location Heart of the South West Enterprise Zone, the site will be developed over the coming years with a focus on energy related uses. At its core, a low-carbon, on-site energy generation facility will provide reliable energy to its tenants, which are likely to centre on activities such as manufacturing, logistics and other industry and business.

The Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF Bridgwater) was constructed in 1939 for the manufacture of explosives, eventually closing in 2008.  The factory was owned and operated by BAE Systems who will retain responsibility for decommissioning and remediating the site, a process which the company has completed safely at many other former ROFs across the UK in the past 25 years.

Once transformed the site will deliver a significant boost to the local economy and employment. It is predicted that once fully operational as SW England’s leading commercial and business centre, the site will create more than 4,400 jobs and will generate in the region of £125m of business rates. 

Martin Bellamy, CEO of Salamanca Group, comments,

“The country faces exciting challenges and the commercial world needs to know we are open for business. This transformational project opens the West of England to the very best national and international companies providing key financial and energy benefits.  This will be the business hub for the future. As strategic investors, we have and will continue to use our deep relationships with key partners to deliver this project.  We will now work closely with the council, local communities and other partners to achieve the optimal future for the site and, by extension, the local economy.”

Councillor Duncan McGinty, Leader of Sedgemoor District Council comments,

“This project is central to our corporate strategy and we are excited about the positive impact the site will have on Sedgemoor and the wider regional economy. We prioritise an employment led approach and the development of this project is of utmost importance to achieving our ambitions. We will be able to inspire our young people, generate new opportunities and retain our well-educated work force, creating a revitalised, higher value and sustainable economy into the future.”

Salamanca Group was represented in the transaction by legal advisor Charles Russell Speechlys; planning consultant Iceni Projects; and environmental consultant Ashfield Solutions.

BAE Systems was represented in the transaction by property consultancy Alder King.

About Salamanca Group

Salamanca Group is the founder and majority shareholder of Gravity. The Group is a privately-held Merchant Banking business, home to experts in global investment advisory, London real estate and private client services. Salamanca Group provides hands-on, strategic and financial advice to corporates and business owners seeking to facilitate growth and crystallise value. The company has also co-invested into multiple assets worldwide including real estate (mixed-use and residential), industrials, energy and natural resources, and luxury marine.  The Group works with clients to enable their business, protect their assets and grow their capital.

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