University makes bid for £36m city centre site

The site in Nottingham was put up for sale for £36m earlier this year
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The University of Nottingham has made a bid to buy the Castle Meadow site in Nottingham city centre as it looks to grow its city centre presence.

The university has plans to turn the former HMRC site into a campus for final year and postgraduate student on professional practice-based courses.

The Castle Meadow site was placed on the market earlier this year with a price tag of £36m.

The University of Nottingham said a city centre campus could house start-up businesses and partnerships under the university’s Digital Nottingham wing, as well as the joint activity delivered through the Universities for Nottingham partnership with Nottingham Trent University.

Vice-chancellor professor Shearer West said: “Opening an additional UK campus is an expression of confidence in the future of both the university and the city of Nottingham.

“Having a campus in the city, with transport links that offer a gateway beyond the region, will help enhance our civic agenda and enable us to deliver on our ambitions to support jobs, investment and growth across the city.

“It also offers greater opportunities for collaboration with local business, industry and SMEs, making it easier for partners to engage with us and develop long-term, mutually beneficial relationships.

“For students in particular the site could enable greater and more convenient links with regional business and industry through placements, entrepreneurship, and collaboration to deliver a professional and practice-based curriculum, enhancing their graduate employment skills and opportunities to remain and work in the city.”

Professor Paul Grainge, academic director for Digital Nottingham, said: “The driving purpose of Digital Nottingham is to be in the city and for the city. The Castle Meadow site provides a tremendous opportunity to connect with people, business, and organisations in the heart of Nottingham.”

Earlier this year, fresh plans to turn the Castle Meadow office complex into almost 300 homes were submitted to Nottingham City Council.

The plans superceded a previous application for the former HMRC offices made in 2018, which was granted permission in 2018, but has now expired. They were submitted on behalf of Cannon Capital Developments by Goldstein Heather Architecture.