Thursday, March 24, 2016

News: Attractive Parkgate Shopping ranks high

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Retail analysts have placed Parkgate Shopping in Rotherham in the top ten of British retail parks ranked by the total retail spend attracted to each centre.

Retail property advisors at Harper Dennis Hobbs have calculated the "Retail Spend Potential" of retail parks across the UK - which takes into account the total floorspace of retail available, the quality of brands on the parks and the level of competition, and matches it against the level of spend available from every resident and worker nearby.

Rotherham's Parkgate Shopping came in at number eight on the list with a retail spend potential of £396,228,947.

Attracting over nine million visitors a year, the 575,000 sq ft retail destination is one of the largest retail parks in the UK. Home to over 40 shops, the park is anchored by the likes of M&S, Outfit, Next, Boots and H&M.

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Jonathan de Mello, head of retail consultancy at Harper Dennis Hobbs, said: "The best retail parks typically trade well because they are near to a weak town centre in terms of retail offer. Rotherham Retail World for instance draws a lot of people from Rotherham who will go there or to Sheffield and Meadowhall or Leeds rather than Rotherham town centre.

"Equally they have benefited from being able to offer the modern large space retail units they require when this cannot be offered in the town centre. Retailers have been forced to decamp into retail parks to find the space they want, and the landlords of these parks have been only too keen to encourage them to do so."

The latest figures from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) showed that footfall on retail parks continues to increase. Last month the sector saw a 2.5% rise which followed a 5.2% year on year increase in January, retail parks' best performance for two years.

In a transaction worth around £175m, BMO Real Estate Partners (BMO) acquired Parkgate Shopping in September 2015 from the Hercules Unit Trust (HUT), which is advised by British Land and managed by Schroders.

In 1987, Parkgate Retail World opened as part of the regeneration of large areas of reclaimed land formerly occupied by the Park Gate Iron and Steel Co. Stadium Developments invested in the scheme which benefited from enterprise zone status.

The latest store opening at Parkgate is Smyths Toys with the 30,000 sq ft Mothercare unit being subdivided into two 15,000 sq ft units, with new signage plans for Smyths Toys alongside Mothercare. The Irish toy retailer is set to open on June 11.

Plans have recently been submitted for new signage at the M&S unit and the closed Blue Inc. store is already under offer. Question marks remain on the future of the Brantano and BHS outlets.

Parkgate Shopping website
Harper Dennis Hobbs website

Images: Parkgate Shopping

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