Miranda Dobson

Member Article

Croydon to receive retail facelift from Hammerson

Investors Royal London, have received £65m for the interest of its 155 year headlease for Whitgift Shopping Centre in Croydon.

London-based real estate giant, Hammerson, have acquired a 25% stake in the lease of the shopping centre to strengthen their stronghold in the South East town.

Whitgift stands adjacent to the Hammerson-owned Centrale centre, and Monday’s transaction is a step towards establishing Croydon as “one of the UK’s leading shopping destinations.”

New selling space of 130,000 sq m will include both retail and leisure space while Hammerson have plans to include up to 500 homes in the centre’s expansion.

Hammerson also intend to extend the Centrale shopping complex with a family leisure quarter after planning permission was granted in May this year, along with a further 150,000 sq m expansion of the Whitgift.

David Atkins, Chief Executive of Hammerson, said: “We are absolutely committed to the delivery of our plans for Croydon, and we are confident that the development of the Whitgift Quarter will play a key role in the regeneration of the town.

“This transaction with Royal London is a key milestone in the development of our plans and our strategy to deliver a new retail core for Croydon.

“We are seeking to work collaboratively with all the owners and other stakeholders to bring forward this exciting scheme.”

The Centrale complex will be incorporated into the Whitgift Quarter to create one complete, revitalised retail unit for the local community.

Plans will be presented for public consultation in October, and Hammerson hope to begin renovations at the beginning of 2014 to finish construction in 2017.

The Senior Fund Manager at Royal London, Drew Watkins,said: “Ever since our first discussions with Hammerson, we have been hugely impressed with their commitment to Croydon, and the quality of their vision for the Whitgift Centre.

“Having been investors in the Whitgift Centre for many years, we are confident Hammerson is the right company to deliver the retail solution that Croydon needs.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Miranda Dobson .

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