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Twin deals push Burgess Hill town centre project forward

Twin deals push Burgess Hill town centre project forward

A pair of deals clinched by developer NewRiver have helped advance the project to redevelop a shopping centre in the East Sussex town of Burgess Hill towards the start of the construction phase.

NewRiver acquired the 123,000 sq ft Martlets Shopping Centre in 2010 for £12 million and now wants to expand it to 465,000 sq ft. As well as more shops, there will be a ten-screen cinema, new restaurant and leisure facilities, a 63-bed hotel and 142 residential units.

The firm has now signed a pre-sale deal for all these homes with Delph Property Group for £34 million. This cash guarantee means the £47 million construction cost of the project has been largely "de-risked," said NewRiver property director Allan Lockhart.

Delph Property’s head of acquisitions Nicholas Belkin commented: "We are excited to be involved in the Burgess Hill regeneration story with NewRiver as it continues to show our firm financial commitment to residential acquisitions throughout the UK."

The second deal secured by NewRiver is the signing of a lease of the centre to Mid Sussex District Council, a move NewRiver described as "another important milestone" in the project. It added that construction work can now start "imminently". 

NewRiver has invested in the area as it believes it can get substantial returns from an affluent part of the country known colloquially as the 'Gatwick Diamond'. The town is connected via the Thameslink line with Gatwick Airport and central London. 

The development at Burgess Hill is not the only major shopping centre expansion in the offing.

According to Construction Enquirer, the £45 million contract to deliver the westward extension of the Lakeside centre in Thurrock, Essex is going to go to McLaren Construction.

The news provider said no official confirmation has been provided, but it has heard this news from contacts at rival bidders Sir Robert McAlpine, ISG and Sisk.

A contact was quoted as saying: "It seems like McLaren have got the nod on this one.

"Nothing has been said officially but you know when you’ve lost a job and this one is heading their way."

Image: iStock


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