City Sentral still looking for tenants

It’s been a while since we have had an update about City Sentral and possible tenants for our new shopping centre. City Sentral will contain 11 food & beverage units, 1 Department store and 70 shops, with work progressing on the new Bus Station ready for its opening this Autumn and the consultation on the Traffic Regulations Orders required to get the Buses to new station as smoothly as possible, ending. I decided it was now the time to go more directly to the source of “who has signed up for a new store?”

Over the past few weeks I’ve been e-mailing retailers, firstly I am genuinely intrigued about which stores are coming and secondly in my own little way to raise the profile of the City Sentral as it has very poor national press coverage outside of Stoke-on-Trent, maybe a facebook campaign similar to “nandos for stoke” could be launched? Continue reading

City Sentral Week 3

As MIPIM just about to start from 6th to 9th March in Cannes, MIPIM is the European meeting point and deal making forum for many key industry players.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council have teamed up with Staffordshire in attempt to generate interest and investment in the area? Continue reading

City Sentral Another Week

Another week on and another Council Budget agreed with pledge to spend £12million and complete Hanley Ring Road, after the last proposal for another Hotel and another Casino failed to materialise and increase our Council Tax by 3.49%

Oddly enough my first suggestion for a retailer to contact on their interest in our City came from a local Councillor, Cllr Rosenau suggested on twitter for her followers to contact Hotel Chocolat about coming to Hanley. Who I am to ignore Cabinet Member for Regeneration she must know a thing or two. So I send off my email hoping above hopes that this will be the first positive response ( I have insider information dont I ) but sadly no yet another negative reply Continue reading

City Sentral – Who’s coming?

With just 6 months to go until the new Bus Station in Hanley opens in Autumn 2012, its time to get excited about what is soon to come.

The opening of the Bus Station will finally allow the old Bus Station and surrounding buildings to be demolished making way for City Sentral.

Consultation has now started on the Bus re-routing  and highway changes required to allow speedy clear access for Buses to the new Station

The City can then move on to the next phase of the development “City Sentral” we know that Marks & Spencers will be the main anchor retialer and the Vue will operator the Cinema. Travelodge are likely to be the Hotel operator due to there past partnerships with Realis, but what of the 70 retailers?

Little has so far been revealed of who these maybe, only one way to find out if you can’t wait, E-mail some retailers.

So I sent this email

When will Stoke-on-Trent get a ****** store, we have two new development centres one an expansion of the existing Potteries Shopping Centre and a brand new £350million shopping precinct City Sentral. Have you yet expressed an interest in either development?

to

  • YO Sushi
  • H&M
  • Nandos
  • Krispy Kreme
  • CULT
  • FatFace
  • Zara
  • Giraffe
  • Wagamama
  • Cafe Rouge

I have only had few replies so far, some the to be expected noncommittal while others more direct and honest.

Many people in Stoke on Trent have been crying out for a Nando’s they have even set up a Facebook Page to the cause, sadly I feel this is unlikly as Nandos reply was

We don’t currently have any plans for a restaurant in Stoke-on-Trent.

Krispy Kreme, CULT, and Zara all said

At this moment in time we are not yet planning on opening a store in Stoke

I have yet to hear from any of the others but I will be providing updates as I do.

Has anyone heard any rumours? Does anyone have inside information or have suggestions on other retailers who I should contact?

Business Boost For Burslem

A report by the Burslem Regeneration Company shows that there are now a total of 187 businesses in the town compared to 137 in 2006. Figures for a Stoke-on-Trent town highlight a 27 per cent increase in businesses in the past four years.

The study, which covers the town centre, has just been completed by the Burslem Regeneration Company for Stoke-on-Trent City Council. The figures cover the same area which was surveyed during the 2006 report undertaken by Experian for the GOAD Report. The report also details the number of community organisations in the town which was not included in the original report in 2006. In total in the town including community organisations there is now 194 units.

The findings come as work starts on creating six more business opportunities in the town. Nessa Butler and her partner Alistair Simpson have secured funding from the Burslem Townscape Heritage Initiative to refurbish three derelict buildings in Nile Street. Three retail units will be created on the ground floor with a further three live work units provided on the upper floors.

A former business woman herself Nessa is keen to provide graduates and new businesses the opportunity to flourish and is excited by the opportunities Burslem offers new businesses.

The three properties in Nile Street are currently derelict and in need of improvement. By bringing them back in to use and creating small start up businesses it provides a real opportunity for local entrepreneurs to bring their dreams in to reality. Both in Ireland and here there are a lot of challenges in the market. But where there is a challenge there is an opportunity and I would have loved to have had this kind of facility when I was starting out. Burslem has really started to attract a variety of niche businesses and I am very impressed and excited by the opportunity this development offers in the town.
Burslem is an area which is seeing a lot of improvements. This report goes to show that the changes that are being made are really having a positive impact as more and different businesses move to the area. The improved street scene, restoration of the town’s heritage appeal and increased business space are all helping to create an attractive atmosphere for businesses to grow. There is still a lot more to do but the latest figures and the creation of new business premises in Nile Street show a promising trend with the town taking a step in the right direction.

Work on the new units is expected to be completed by Spring next year.

Pits n Pots are also part of the regeneration of Burslem, with the offices for our Community Interest Company, Potteries Media, and the 6 Towns Radio studios being based in the town and getting ready to move in to a new unit with a purpose built studio, in the next few weeks.

The extra stores include six new retail units, 13 new specialist stores including photographic, music and toy stores, 19 new financial and business services and eight new leisure services including cafes, takeaways and bars.

It is encouraging to see that not only has the number of empty units dropped in the town but new shops and businesses are also being created. A number of Live/Work facilities have been developed which have been well received by creative start up businesses. It is a promising sign and it is important that work continues to make sure that even more progress can be made.