A STOURBRIDGE councillor has told of his disappointment that Dudley Council will not be able to claw back the proceeds of the sale of a former school site.

Conservative councillor Steve Clark asked the council to instigate legal proceedings against Birmingham Metropolitan College to recover some of the profits that are expected to be made from the sale of the old Longlands School site, which is now set to be turned into a new housing estate.

The former secondary school and later art college in Brook Street in the Old Quarter was transferred from council ownership in 1996 to Stourbridge College before it was taken over in 2013 by BMet which has since got into financial difficulties.

Cllr Clark told the News in March that he would be looking into how the asset transfer came to be - adding that he could not believe "no provision would have been made to return the asset or a sell on clause be in the agreement should the asset be sold".

But he has since discovered no claw back provisions were made in the asset transfer agreement and he said there was no "legislation to deal with the situation to date".

He said: "There wasn't anything in the initial terms and conditions that led us to be able to do anything about it. I'm so disappointed. It's such bad business practice."

The site, which has lain empty since 2011 when Stourbridge College moved out, will now be sold to developers Persimmon Homes after planning permission to build 52 homes was approved at Dudley's planning meeting last week.

Cllr Clark,who represents Wollaston and Stourbridge Town, said he has since asked the council to ensure "we have a covenant in place" whenever any future asset transfers occur in the borough. He said: "If ever an asset is transferred in the future there's going to be legal recourse for us to pull back the property if it's going to be sold."

He said of the development plan for Longlands: “It’s not the ideal solution but it’s a good solution to move us on. I’m pleased it’s going ahead. It’s about time.”

Cliff Hall, principal and CEO at BMet, said any income from the sale of the land would be used for the benefit of students.