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LONDON-As part of plans to close the Battle hospital in Reading, Berkshire, the local NHS trust has appointed Atis Real Weatheralls to sell the 27-acre site. But it will not be available for development until 2006 when the hospital relocates to the nearby Royal Berkshire site. Until this time, the NHS Trust intends to lease the space back.

Approximately 12 acres at the site will be available for residential development, together with a further 11 acres of retail comprising a 50,000 sf food store, 47,500 sf of non-food retail, a fast food outlet and a petrol filling station. The residential element of the site has outline planning permission for 297 dwellings, including 40% affordable housing, and 18 flats above the non-food retail. The remainder of the land is for public open space and community uses.

Nigel Durman, director in Consulting Agency at Atis Real Weatheralls, said: “We intend to begin marketing the site in early summer and intend to offer it as a whole or in residential and retail lots. The key objective for our client is to raise the maximum value from the land, which will be used to improve facilities and equipment at the Royal Berkshire Hospital.”

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