Wycombe District Council announces intention to buy the Brunel engine shed next to High Wycombe railway station
Wycombe District Council has announced its intention to purchase the Brunel engine shed next to High Wycombe railway station, using a compulsory purchase order if necessary.
The purchase of the engine shed is part of a wider programme to renew the area around High Wycombe railway station and along Easton Street (the Eastern Quarter).
In a Cabinet meeting held on Monday 12th November 2018, Councillor Steve Broadbent, Wycombe District Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Regeneration, set out the Council’s vision to create a station square as an important gateway into the town which would help unlock future inward investment in this part of the town.
The regeneration of the area would enhance the station and benefit rail users as well as potentially providing facilities like a cycle workshop, showers for people cycling to the station, a cafe, storage and a business hub.
Until approximately a decade ago the Brunel shed was in private ownership and used for commercial purposes, however it was purchased by Chiltern Railways and since then has not been brought back into use.
Wycombe District Council has already held discussions with Chiltern Railways. If it is not possible to negotiate a purchase, during the Wycombe District Council Cabinet meeting held on Monday 12th November 2018 it was agreed to take the first steps and start the process to buy the Brunel shed from Chiltern Railways using a compulsory purchase order (CPO) if necessary.
Wycombe District Council want to bring the Brunel shed back into use as a facility for the people of High Wycombe and for visitors. The building could be used by community groups for events as well as for commercial uses such as a base for start-up business, for example food and beverage entrepreneurs.
A compulsory purchase process normally takes around 18 months, however, if Chiltern Railways do not object it could be considerably shorter. Alternatively, Chiltern Railways could be in a position to negotiate a sale, in which case the process would be shorter still.
It may take between 6 to 12 months to carry out the works needed to bring the Brunel shed back in to use.