BCSC 08: Preston Tithebarn cinema prelet ‘within weeks’

Richard Coppell, Lend Lease's senior development manager in charge of the Preston Tithebarn scheme, said the operator of the nine-screen cinema within the £700m scheme would be announced "within the next few weeks".

Coppell said: "We are very close to announcing the operator for a 55,000 sq ft gross premises. That would be all our major anchor prelets in place as we go through the planning process."

Market speculation has centred on Vue as the likely tenant for the cinema in Tithebarn. Coppell declined to discuss names.

Lend Lease and joint venture partner Grosvenor have already signed John Lewis for a 230,000 sq ft store and Marks & Spencer for 150,000 sq ft at the 1.5m sq ft project. An outline planning application was submitted in September this year for the project, first mooted five years ago.

Pending planning approval from Preston council, a compulsory purchase order and public inquiry are expected to follow next year.

Rival councils Blackpool and Blackburn with Darwen are preparing to object to the scheme on the grounds of its scale, claiming it is too large for central Lancashire.

Coppell was talking at the British Council of Shopping Centres annual conference in Liverpool.

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