BCSC 08: Thornfield in talks over last major Bury prelets

Jason Marcus, chairman of Thornfield Properties, claimed talks were at an advanced stage with retailers for the four remaining larger shop units at its £350m The Rock centre, currently on site in Bury.

The units range from 10,000 sq ft to 20,000 sq ft although two are likely to be knocked together for one combined unit, subject to completion of talks.

Marcus said: "This week [at BCSC] has helped move talks along with those retailers and we have had helicopter trips from the conference in Liverpool to Bury to take them to the scheme."

The 1.6m sq ft mixed-use project is funded by HBOS, part owner of Thornfield, and is being built by the same Laing O'Rourke team that delivered Liverpool One for Grosvenor.

The Rock will feature 500,000 sq ft of retail, anchored by a 103,000 sq ft Debenhams and 77,000 sq ft Marks & Spencer, relocating from the Millgate shopping centre. Next, River Island, Pizza Express, a Vue cinema and AMF bowling centre have also signed up.

Another 50 smaller retail units are expected to start letting closer to the July 2010 opening date.

Non-retail elements include 400 residential units, a new 55,000 sq ft healthcare for Bury PCT, already completed, and 1,250 car parking spaces.

CB Richard Ellis, GCW, Nick Green & Co are leisure agents on the scheme.

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