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School 'worth millions' bought for 50p after worker remembers decades-old agreement when spotting for sale sign

School 'worth millions' bought for 50p after worker remembers decades-old agreement when spotting for sale sign

The school had been closed since 2017

A school in Tasmania 'worth millions' has been sold for rather less than what it might otherwise have gone for.

One charity in Launceston seems to have gotten the deal of lifetime when they spotted a for sale sign on Newstead Heights School, which had been closed since 2017.

St Giles, who provide support to people with disabilities, ended up buying the school for just 50p.

And, according to ABC News, property prices in the Australian state have been skyrocketing in recent years, which makes buying a property like this even more impressive.

However, the situation gets even more interesting.

Newstead Heights School has been closed since 2017.
Google Maps

While the property might otherwise have been worth a lot of money, back in 1984, an agreement was put in place to sell it to the Department of Education for 50 cents, should it ever go up for sale.

With today's inflation costs, St Giles were able to purchase the school for $1 AUD.

And it was all thanks to the long memory of one member of staff that the agreement was brought to light, with an investigation through the school archives revealed that the agreement was, in fact, true.

The school would have been likely to go for millions otherwise.

St Giles chief executive Honni Pitt told ABC Northern Tasmania Breakfast that the deal was a stroke of luck, adding: "The agreement to sell it to the Department of Education for 50 cents was back in 1984, that's a long time ago, people move on and people change within government and within St Giles.

St Giles

"It wasn't until we saw a for sale sign on the property that one of our longstanding staff members thought to mention that she had some recollection that perhaps this agreement was in place.

"There are three employees who have been with us some time who had heard of this arrangement and spoke about it, mentioned it, brought it up and we went digging through the archives, found the old minutes of the meetings and thought, 'you know what, it's true', and we reached out to the state government."

And regaining ownership from the state government was a lengthy process, taking two years to do, but St Giles has finally acquired the land and building a few weeks ago, with the property currently adjoining their facility.

Launceston real estate agent Phillipa Jenkins was pretty gobsmacked by the situation, adding that property in the area was 'highly, highly sought after'.

"Newstead is probably the second-highest sought-after suburb in the Launceston area." she said.

"A block of land can range anything from $300,000 to $400,000 in that sort of area.

"It'd be worth millions."

She then added that it was an 'amazing deal'.

"For the land value in that area, it's pretty incredible that they've been able to get it for that sort of price.

"But all in all, St Giles is a great organisation so it's probably well-deserved."

Featured Image Credit: Google Maps/St Giles

Topics: News, Australia, World News, Education