3 Hardman Square

GMC takes top floor as 3 Hardman Square fills up

Charlie Schouten

The General Medical Council is to expand its presence in Manchester after taking around 22,000 sq ft on the top floor of Royal London’s 3 Hardman Square, adding to its 63,000 sq ft at Hardman Street in Spinningfields.

The GMC is planning to spend around £2.5m fitting out the space as a new clinical assessment centre, which will help the regulator double the amount of doctors it can test each year. JLL represented GMC.

The new space at Hardman Square will allow the GMC to assess 11,000 doctors per year, and will include two testing areas which can cater for 18 candidates at a time. There will also be consultation rooms where doctors will be faced with practical scenarios to test their ability to care for patients. This adds to its existing presence in the city, where it has 63,000 sq ft over two floors at 3 Hardman Street.

The building in Spinningfields is owned by Royal London, and is let to a variety of occupiers. These include Towergate Insurance on the third floor, Michael Page on the first, WorldPay on the fifth and sixth, and TLT Solicitors on the seventh. Carluccio’s is on the ground floor.

The GMC is understood to have taken the entirety of the eighth floor; this leaves a total of around 17,600 sq ft available, split between the fourth and fifth floors. The quoting rent is £32.50/sq ft.

The building was sold to Royal London by M&G Real Estate in December 2017 for around £100m. Designed by Foster & Partners, the 178,000 sq ft building was largely originally occupied by law firm Halliwells. OBI and CBRE are the retained agents.

Una Lane, director of registration and revalidation at the GMC, said: “This is a critical time for the NHS and recruiting enough doctors, with the right skills, is vital for the health service.

“Our new assessment centre, with its increased capacity, will support the aims of the Government’s NHS long-term plan, ensuring that doctors who want to come to the UK to work can do so in greater numbers, while demonstrating that they meet the high standards that we require.

“For some years now we have seen the demand for test places increase significantly and we know the good reputation the NHS has, and the opportunities available here for doctors in training, are real pull factors for doctors who have qualified outside Europe.

“It is therefore a priority for us that we are able to offer test places for those doctors when they need them so they can demonstrate they have the necessary skills to provide high quality care to patients in the UK.”

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This space must have been the longest ever on the market in Manchester. Empty since Hailwells went bang and has been available since building was put back on market 6 years ago, which is strange as it’s a great space with excellent views. Be interesting to know what “incentives” were thrown in to fill it.

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