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Bolton council buys shopping centre

By Paul Norman - Wednesday, June 13, 2018 13:03

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Bolton Council has bought the Crompton Place shopping centre for £14.8m in a move it said would accelerate its £1bn town centre regeneration masterplan.

The acquisition from the Santander Pension Fund was rubberstamped by Bolton's Cabinet on 14 May and has now completed.

JLL will continue as property manager at the 280,000 sq ft centre, which contains 46 shops, kiosks, offices and a 285-space car park.

Bolton said the purchase has been funded from its £100m town centre fund which is financed via an interest loan repaid using dividends from Manchester Airport and the Yorkshire Purchasing Company.

The shopping centre is one of the central sites in the authority’s Town Centre Masterplan alongside Trinity Quarter, Cheadle Square, Church Wharf and Croal Valley.

Leader of Bolton Council, Cllr Linda Thomas, said in a statement: "The purchase of Crompton Place is fundamental to support the regeneration and transformation of our town centre.

“It is at the heart of our town’s civic and retail core and this deal means we now have control of a major strategic site that is critical to delivering the Town Centre Masterplan.

“We will now be focusing on ways to regenerate the area for the long-term benefit of the town centre and our residents across the borough.

“We have carried out extensive due diligence checks before acquiring the centre and these have confirmed that the purchase price reflects current market conditions and represents fair market value.

“Bolton is following the example of many other local authorities across the country that have also invested in their local shopping centres to deliver regeneration schemes.

“There will be no changes in the day to day operation and running of the shopping centre in the immediate future, to ensure it continues to operate smoothly for tenants and shoppers.”

Bolton council chiefs plan to rebuild the centre in the long-term.

Cllr Thomas added: “We have listened to people’s views about the town centre and we are taking action. When we launched the masterplan, we said we would move quickly to make things happen and making this strategic investment which will be a catalyst for huge regeneration.

“Like other councils, we have made this commercial investment because owning the centre gives us the opportunity to influence and lead our town’s regeneration. We will now be able to look at all of the options for Crompton Place and make sure tenants, the public and stakeholders have an opportunity to have their say, before any decisions are made.

“We have all seen the amazing transformation of The Market Place and the benefits that has brought in terms of visitor numbers. Crompton Place also requires that kind of vision and investment to deliver our regeneration plans, complement our existing retail offer, and bring new businesses into the town centre.”

Colliers International advised Bolton council while Kennedys provided legal advice.

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