Ellesmere the property speculator

There is an article on DullNews.com here about the Ellesmere logic of property speculation.

It starts

Ipswich Borough Council Leader David Ellesmere is one of Ipswich’s largest property speculators, an Ipswich Spy investigation has concluded.

Mr Ellesmere has spent more than £20 million of public money in the last year purchasing properties around the town – many of which he has no confirmed tenants for and one which has cost a further half million pounds to demolish.

Figures that will be revealed to councillors at next week’s Borough Council meeting show that Mr Ellesmere has borrowed more than £19 million to fund the purchases, with the balance coming from a property speculation budget he introduced when he took over as council leader in 2011.

A Spy investigation estimates that the interest payments will eventually cost £5.9 million, though the council insists that this will be paid from future income from these sites.

Mr Ellesmere’s speculative purchases include the council’s own offices, Grafton House, which cost just under £9 million; land and buildings at the entrance to Ipswich’s Waterfront which cost £200 thousand; the former police station, which is estimated to have cost over £500 thousand, and a further half million to demolish; and the controversial purchase of the sugar beet factory site in Sproughton – outside the Borough boundary – which cost more than £10 million.

He also bought property on Norwich Road to extend a car park in South Street; the lease on the Drum & Monkey pub, where the council already owns the freehold; the lease on the former Took’s Bakery site; as well as a number of empty properties under compulsory purchase with a view to returning these to residential use..

Ellesmere Logic states that the more is owned by the public sector the better and the spending of money raised through hiking up council tax and by frivolous borrowing is good because you can never run out of other people’s money.

The private sector wouldn’t touch the sugar beet site with a barge pole but Ellesmere Logic says that it was a good investment. The fact that any rates paid by any business there would go to Babergh rather than Ipswich doesn’t mean anything. We understand that this is one of the many things that Ipswich labour are at war with each other about.

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