The ‘hanging gardens of Basingstoke’ – the iconic Mountbatten house, originally the headquarters of Wiggins Teape – has been sold for £2 million.
Squarestone Growth, the regional office fund, has completed the acquisition of Mountbatten House, the Grade II listed office building, previously known as Gateway House.
It was developed by Arup Associates between 1974-1976 for the paper manufacturer Wiggins Teape as a five-storey, 154,200 sq ft building, well known for the series of roof gardens designed by landscape garden designer James Russell. It is known locally as the ‘Hanging Gardens of Basingstoke’.
Squarestone Growth described the buy as ‘a rare and exciting opportunity to use its asset management expertise to undertake a full-scale refurbishment to restore an iconic building and deliver leading office space to the constrained Thames Valley office market’.
It has appointed FCBStudios to undertake a restoration project.
Mountbatten House was awarded listed status in 2015.
Hugo Denée, managing director at Squarestone Growth, said: “Mountbatten House is an exciting addition to our regional portfolio that we have grown to £230m in the past three years.
“The transaction is a prime example of the quality of our stock selection and vision for value-add opportunities. The Thames Valley office market has suffered from persistent undersupply of Grade A office space and we look forward to bringing back Mountbatten House to the market through this extensive restoration project so that it can once again be a vibrant hub for the local area.”
Executive director of development at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, Neil Taylor added: “We look forward to working with Squarestone Growth on its refurbishment plans for the iconic Mountbatten House and Grade II listed hanging gardens.
“This investment will provide further Grade A office space that businesses require now and in the future as part of the ongoing regeneration of Basing View and is further proof of Basingstoke’s position as an attractive business location.”