Monday, October 17, 2022

News: Plans approved to demolish and replace Rotherham call centre


Plans have been approved to demolish a call centre building in Rotherham that has been vacant for a number of years.

Unit 1 of the Callflex Business Park in Manvers was one of a number of commercial properties built on the former Manvers Main Colliery Site specifically for call centre use, but it now looks set to be knocked down.

Plans from owners, CEG, are to replace the 3-storey L-shaped offices with a general industrial building of some 37,000 sq ft.

The colliery site was reclaimed in the 1990s. Formerly occupied by Portal as managed call centre space, the unit was previously home to companies such as E-On and other call centre operators. The space has been marketed since 2018 without success.

The plans, drawn up by Pegasus, stated: "Given this lack of occupation or interest, the applicant wishes to bring about a more viable, employment generating use upon the site.

"CEG Ltd as owners of the Callflex Business Park now want to make this full planning application to secure a new user for the site, who could occupy the proposed building for the long-term future, given the outcomes of shifts in commercial requirements."

The plans for a large single ground floor area with ancillary office mezzanine were recently approved without going to the planning board at Rotherham Council.

The new building, which has a footprint larger than the one currently in situ, can be used for General Industrial or Storage and Distribution purposes and also includes HGV bays and landscaping work at the site.

A neighbouring occupier has objected on highway grounds regarding the access for HGVs but the council's Transportation Unit have assessed the application and raised no objections.

Agents at Knight Frank explain the reason for the circumstances: "Historically these larger scale call centre buildings had been built during a period of the historic enterprise zone status and where there had been good demand from back office/call centre operations and substantial offers available – rates free periods and large incentive packages. A lot of the traditional call centre market moved off shore, and in more recent times due to the pandemic a lot of businesses have now adopted home working policies in the UK.

"Looking at the performance of the property asset, this is under delivering and also is not currently stimulating any employment or economic growth in the region. Therefore we could consider alternative options for the asset. One sector that is showing substantial growth demand and potential job creation is the delivery of new industrial and warehouse accommodation within the South Yorkshire region."

CEG website

Images: Knight Frank


Anonymous,  October 18, 2022 at 6:31 AM  

There will be more warehouses than homes in Rotherham at this rate!

Anonymous,  October 18, 2022 at 5:51 PM  

Well, that was a good use of Objective 1 money, wasn't it?

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