Back in July when I did the Old Gaol progress update from the grandstand view of the County Hall roof, Colin Wiggins sent me this picture of the same view from back in 1968 – before the swimming pool was built. It shows out buildings and a car port as part of the Old Gaol complex.
Having lost that grandstand view I shall have to rely more on other reports and snooping about. The Old Gaol has hit the headlines on two occasions in the last month. First because the developers cut down a tree of heaven after the demolition works had damaged it, and second because ownership has transferred to Cranbourne Homes and building work has commenced.
The VWHDC press release said “Initially, the work will concentrate on site infrastructure and constructing a new 60 space underground car park, before moving on to building the new flats and restaurants.
Following completion of the demolition and archaeological work … ownership of the Old Gaol site has been passed from the Vale of White Horse District Council to developers Cranbourne Homes.
So far, Cranbourne has paid the Vale just over £2million for the site. As part of the deal, the council will receive further payments during the course of the development from the sale of residential units. The final value of the scheme to the council will not be known until all units have been sold…”
There was another story didn’t make any headlines I saw. One archaelogical firm had the job and did the dig. The more local Abingdon group thought there was still more to be found in the way of Roman remains and wanted more digging done.