Afflecks fully let and trading well, says Bruntwood

Afflecks Palace, the alternative retail emporium in Manchester's Northern Quarter, is once again fully let after a revamp by owner and manager Bruntwood.

Bruntwood already owned the freehold when it bought out leasehold owner Elaine Walsh in February 2008 and relaunched the centre simply as Afflecks.

The new manager doubled Afflecks' stalls from 30 to 60 and said it has filled all voids within seven months of completing the makeover. Tarquin Hodson, owner of the Lost Property stall, said: "I've experienced the biggest year on year sales growth and I'm extremely pleased with how the business is being managed."

Bruntwood's new management team, led by customer service manager, Tony Martin, has collaborated with stallholders on the marketing of the business as well as providing space to local art and fashion students to showcase their art and designs.

The company said the centre still attracts a celebrity clientele and in the past few months music legend Blondie, actress Anna Friel and pop star Ashley Roberts from the Pussycat Dolls have all been spotted there.

Martin said: "When we took over the business the building was run down, there were empty stalls and the stallholders' morale was low. But since we've taken over, we've worked closely with stallholders, joined in with local events and trading is better than ever. We currently have a waiting list of 10 businesses who want to set up a stall in Afflecks."

The latest stall to move in is Wanderland Boutique which sells a range of ladies wear and owner Barbara Ojeogwa served Kate Nash there last Thursday. In the past couple of weeks costume designer Tracey Cliffe has set up her stall Love me Again, selling a range of rejected clothes which have been recycled and turned into new garments. Back in November Afflecks also attracted a new café on to the third floor replacing the one removed by previous owner Elaine Walsh.

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