Beetham 2 Manchester C.JoeGardner
The building is need of extensive repair work. Credit: Joe Gardner for Place North West

Beetham Tower changes hands  

Dan Whelan

Listed investor Ground Rents Income Fund has offloaded the 47-storey Manchester skyscraper to an unnamed investor for a nominal fee. 

Beetham Tower, which comprises the 279-bedroom Hilton Hotel on floors one to 22 and 219 apartments on the upper floors, is in need of extensive repair work. 

Problems relating to sealant around windows were first identified in 2014, two years after Ground Rents acquired the SimpsonHaugh-designed building. 

The new owner is “expected to deliver a long-term repair solution for the property”, according to Ground Rents. 

“The disposal releases Ground Rents and its subsidiaries from all current litigation and freeholder obligations relating to Beetham Tower”, a statement said. 

In January 2019, the High Court ruled that landlord should pay for the repairs to Beetham Tower after Hilton Hotel operator Blue Manchester launched legal proceedings. 

The £2.9m repair obligation defaulted to Ground Rents following the collapse of the original contractor, Carillion Construction. 

Carillion had completed urgent safety work on the panels in 2014 and was in the process of an investigation and assessment for further work when the contractor went into administration. 

In April 2020 following the High Court ruling, Ground Rents lodged a planning application to carry out the repair work to 1,440 windows. The application was approved by Manchester City Council but no work has taken place yet. 

Ground Rents said: “The property has been a very challenging investment for the company but completion of the disposal is a positive step forward.” 

Schroder Real Estate Investment Management took over as the fund manager of the Ground Rents Income Fund in 2019, replacing Brooks Macdonald.

Schroders was contacted for comment. 

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Sigh. Wonder if in a decades time we are going to see a regeneration agenda related to prematurely redundant residential buildings? Not beyond the realm of possibility.

By Ted

Beetham Tower is iconic so these developments are deeply worrying.

By Christopher J Green

Panels are always being replaced at Deansgate Square too

By YS

Along with the article on this site a few days back which placed M’cr in the top 20 most expensive locations in the world to build.Solutions are needed.I know there is a large factory/processing plant in Derbyshire that produces hempcrete .Along with the miraculous graphene I would of thought production of materials could be mostly localised and somehow bring about a quicker build time thus reduce the costs (materials and labour).I hope no corners are cut with the St Michael’s job.

By Robert Fuller