SIC - Orkney & Shetland valuation joint board

HNP and SLAP reach agreement

Student accommodation will be built on the site once the HNP Engineers premises is demolished. Photo: ShetNews/Chris Cope

LOCAL engineering firm HNP is set to leave its premises on Lerwick’s Commercial Road by mid-December after an agreement was reached with landlord Shetland Leasing and Property Developments Limited (SLAP).

On Thursday Shetland Charitable Trust’s property arm SLAP confirmed the two parties had “resolved their obligations” under their lease following months of dispute, with HNP set to leave the premises by 12 December.

The building is set to be demolished to pave the way for an 80-room University of the Highlands and Islands student hostel, which will be constructed by Chester-based developers Cityheart.

HNP Engineers and SLAP had been embroiled in a lengthy legal battle after the company said in December it would be evicted from the property despite offering to buy the land for £330,000 last year.

The established business – which employs 16 people – is currently in the process of moving to a property at Lerwick’s Lower Blackhill industrial estate.

In August charities regular OSCR ruled that trustees and SLAP directors “acted in line with their legal duties” when selling the land.

SLAP acquired the site in 2004 and moved HNP’s long-term lease to a year-on-year agreement before putting the land up for sale last year.

The company has occupied the Commercial Road site for around half a century.