LGIM Real Assets has launched a new €95.3m (£85m) retail and leisure extension which forms part of Legal & General’s €246.6m (£220m) retail and leisure scheme, formerly known as the Eastbourne Arndale Centre. The extension has been an important catalyst for the wider regeneration across the town and is primed to create a further 570 jobs, driving continued economic and social growth. The launch also marks the full switchover from the Eastbourne Arndale Centre to being rebranded as The Beacon.
Schuh, New Look, Flying Tiger and Paperchase all opened their doors with Jack Wills also due to open early December, following on from Next, H&M and Fat Face who opened in October. Premier League Football Club Brighton & Hove Albion will also open a temporary shop in the extension until December 23. The second phase of the retail and leisure extension will follow in April 2019, when Cineworld, Ask, Nandos, Chiquitos, Frankie & Benny’s and high-end jeweller, Brufords, will open for trade.
To date, agreements have been exchanged on over 70% of the total extension floor area. Alongside investment in The Beacon, Eastbourne Borough Council is delivering The Devonshire Quarter, a €60.5m (£54m) project to create a top cultural, sporting and conference destination and is also carrying out major highway improvement works in partnership with East Sussex Council. These works continue to underpin economic growth within the area, as one of the fastest growing seaside towns in the UK. Legal & General and the Council have worked in close collaboration to support this growth, proactively bringing new initiatives forward which will benefit regeneration within the town.
Michael Barrie, Head of Fund Management at LGIM Real Assets, said: “LGIM Real Assets has a long-term track record of regenerating towns and cities across the UK and has a depth of experience in creating unique retail and leisure destinations. Creating and improving a retail destination is more than just carrying out a refurbishment. It is about understanding the needs of the local area and working hand in hand with local authorities and occupiers to ensure a holistic transformation can take place within the wider town. Eastbourne has shown real loyalty to their town centre and its development. As a result, our scheme already dominates its catchment with continued strong footfall numbers each year. The new retail and leisure extension will complement the existing centre, which has been successfully trading with the likes of Primark, River Island, Pandora, Arcadia, Boots and Sainsbury’s, with both Wilko’s and Deichmann now also open for trade. The expanded tenant mix and range of uses will only cement The Beacon further as the retail and leisure destination of choice in the local area.”
Councillor David Tutt, Leader of Eastbourne Borough Council, said: “For many years the council's ambition was to see a high-class retail and leisure complex that would provide mass appeal, not only for local people but also for visitors to Eastbourne from far and wide. The Beacon is the fulfilment of these plans and as council leader, I am delighted by what has been achieved.”
Eastbourne MP Stephen Lloyd said: “The opening of another five brand new shops, the linkway bringing together the extension and our established shopping centre, along with the formal changeover from the Arndale Centre to The Beacon, is a profound moment for our town. It is as clear a sign as possible at just how well we are doing, and how positively investors see the town’s future. And they’re right to do so. I am absolutely certain our wonderful new shopping centre will draw tens of thousands of new visitors to Eastbourne.”