With the purchase, the Fosse Partnership is committing €152.4m (£135m) to develop the 50,585.7m² (12.5-acre) Castle Acres site, adjacent to its existing Fosse shopping park, to create a new shopping and dining destination. The new development will create around 288,000 ft² of retail and restaurant space, complementing the current Fosse line-up.
Everards of Leicestershire, the family-owned brewer and pub operator founded in 1849, had based its brewery, office and logistics at Castle Acres for over 30 years. Everards is relocating to 2 new sites, Everards Meadows and Optimus Point and will provide vacant possession of CastleAcres before Christmas. Work will commence on site in early 2018.
The planning process for the redevelopment was led by Everards and supported by Next, which will be taking a 90,000 ft² three-story store in the new scheme. The Castle Acres scheme is already almost 60% pre-let, with other confirmed tenants including Debenhams, TK Maxx and Clarks.
Hannah Milne, Director of Regional Retail at The Crown Estate, said: “Fosse is already one of the best retail centres in the country and Castle Acres will be an outstanding addition which further enhances this popular destination. The Castle Acres deal is a key part of our portfolio strategy; to tailor destinations to meet the needs of their catchment and the local communities. The combination of retail and leisure and the quality experience that Castle Acres will provide is what local customers have told us they want and is also a major vote of confidence for Leicester.”
Richard Everard, Chairman of Everards said: "We are delighted to have reached an agreement to sell Castle Acres to The Crown Estate, through the Fosse Partnership. Having already established our new logistics centre at Glenfield, Leicestershire we now look forward to developing Everards Meadows. The build programme, commencing in early 2018 will include the Everard's office and brewery, destination food and drink units and a cycling centre. We look forward to all of these developments further strengthening our family business for this and successive generations"