£3m sale of Rugby shopping centre to fuel town centre 'renaissance' - The Rugby Observer

£3m sale of Rugby shopping centre to fuel town centre 'renaissance'

Andy Morris 20th Jul, 2017 Updated: 20th Jul, 2017   0

A RENAISSANCE of Rugby town centre is on the cards – so says the man behind the £3m sale of a shopping complex most of which has remained unused since it opened eight years ago.

The Swan Centre, comprising 16 shopping units which opened alongside Asda in 2009, has been sold to Caracal Properties in a deal worth more than £3million – despite ten of the units currently being empty.

Caracal’s plans include turning the old Co-Op Home and Living shop – which closed over a year ago – into a new four-restaurant dining hub called Chapel Street Dining.

The dining complex was originally scheduled to open this summer when first announced in March.

Property consultancy Harris Lamb was instructed by former owners to sell the centre, and Head of Retail, David Walton, said there had been competitive bidding from potential buyers.

David said: “This is a really exciting opportunity to be a part of Rugby’s renaissance. The town has undergone a new lease of life in recent months with significant investment being ploughed into its improvement.

“The centre is at the heart of the town centre, close to the Clock Towers Shopping Centre and Asda, which offer a combined 429 car parking spaces.

“The centre has a number of the units already let to retailers including Costa Coffee, Bet Fred and The Entertainer.”

Harris Lamb is now marketing units at the centre to potential new occupiers – and targeting ‘high-profile restaurant chains’ for the dining hub.

Aftab Gaffar, Managing Director of Rugby First said: “It’s great to hear that the sale has been completed. Caracal Properties’ investment in the town centre will provide a significant boost to the local economy.

“They have some exciting plans for the Swan Centre and I hope to see these progress quickly now the sale has gone through, further enhancing the town centre offer and creating more jobs.

“Rugby First and the Council will work with the new landlords to bring this area back into use and help attract more visitors to the town centre.

“We have already started to see new investment in the surrounding area with the refurbishment of the Clock Towers Shopping Centre, the opening of the World Rugby Hall of Fame and the recent announcement to turn the old Marks & Spencer into an exciting chocolate factory and museum visitor attraction.

“Our town centre is changing and faces a number of challenges like many others across the country but it continues to attract investment.

“Rugby is one of the fastest growing boroughs in the country, with major housing, retail and employment developments.

“Rugby First with its stakeholders is committed to support the creation of a town centre fit for the future and this development will undoubtedly help realise this vision.”

Work on the new dining hub is scheduled to start this summer.


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