Victoria Quays in Sheffield

CPP complete sale of iconic Sheffield waterfront offices

Leading South Yorkshire property consultants Commercial Property Partners (CPP) have successfully negotiated the sale of a 3,500 sq ft office unit at Victoria Quays in Sheffield to marketing and design agency We Are.

CPP and joint marketing agents BHT have sold the office in the iconic Grain and Terminal Building for an undisclosed price on behalf of Leeds-based North Tamar Developments.

Rob Darrington, partner with the award-winning CPP, commented: “This was a significant deal because the Grade II-listed Grain and Terminal Building has been vacant for 20 years and has become one of the city’s most undervalued destinations.

“Built around 155 years ago right on the waterfront of the Sheffield canal basin, it formed part of a group of buildings that acted as a cargo port for coal and grain, right up until its closure in 1970. It remained vacant and fell into disrepair until Sheffield City Council received funding to regenerate the area in 1992.

“There was some major developments at the quayside originally, with big name occupiers such as the Hilton Hotel, Living Well Leisure Centre, Nabarro’s and Lloyds, but nothing much has happened there for years.

“The original vision for the quays was to create a business and leisure destination, similar to Leeds and Manchester, making use of the historic and atmospheric ambience. However, occupiers felt that the destination remained too detached from the main footfall of the city centres leisure circuit to be viable.

“Therefore the decision was taken to seek planning consent for alternative uses and target different market sectors. Now we believe that this sale will breathe new life into an understated area of the city and will complete its renaissance.

“The private sector is now actively involved in promoting Victoria Quays and the Grain and Terminal Building and we are confident, given the burgeoning commercial property market in the city and the support of the city council that this area will return to its former glory,” said Mr Darrington.

Andy Weir, Managing Director from the creative agency We Are, commented: “We have a vision to turn this unloved and forgotten building into a truly amazing creative space that will become our permanent home.

“This is a really inspiring new chapter in the life of our agency. From day one, we’ve always had the huge ambition to own our own premises. That’s when we found, and fell in love with, the Grain Warehouse with its amazing industrial heritage and imposing steel grain hoppers.

“Sheffield Council have some pretty ambitious plans to develop the Castlegate area of the city. These include uncovering the ancient castle ruins that are currently buried beneath the old Castle Market, creating an inner city green space around it and uncovering part of the River Don to begin creating a vibrant riverside culture in the heart of the city.

“It certainly sounds like that long forgotten and forlorn part of Sheffield could be transformed into something special. And we’ll be right in the middle of it all,” added Mr Weir.

The Grain and Terminal Building occupies a prominent position at the front of Victoria Quays with excellent visibility from the Parkway Roundabout. Its upper floors have been developed for residential apartments, whilst there is 7,500 sq ft of office space on the ground floor and basement, of which We Are has taken just under half.

The building is positioned at the head of the canal basin and the canal dock runs into the centre of the building which provides a unique water feature. Internally, there are a number of other features including the original Grain Hoppers and externally there is a pontoon over the canal which would provide an excellent break-out area.

David Brakenridge, form the joint agents BHT added: “The remaining office accommodation allows occupiers the potential for an individual fit-out to their own specification, enabling the creation of some very personal and character-filled offices in this splendid waterside location”.

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