Entrance To Barton Square, Trafford Centre
Barton Square is also home to Sealife Manchester and Legoland Discovery Centre c.Seth Whales

Nerf edges closer to Trafford Centre opening 

Dan Whelan

The £4.5m laser combat venue is looking to open its first UK site later this year after plans to change the use of 25,000 sq ft of units at Barton Square were lodged with Trafford Council. 

The application was submitted by Barton Square Limited, part of the wider Trafford Centre group of companies. 

Under the plans, three first floor units at the recently revamped Barton Square at the Greater Manchester shopping mall would be amalgamated to accommodate Nerf Action Xperience, a laser combat entertainment venue. 

A 4,000 sq ft mezzanine floor would also be constructed within the combined units.

Nerf, a joint venture between US games giant Hasbro and Salford-based Rocafella Leisure Group, opened its first site in Singapore in 2019. The Barton Square venue would be its second. 

The three units to be occupied by Nerf were originally earmarked for use as restaurants following the £75m upgrade of Barton Square, which completed last year.

The arrival of Nerf at Barton Square, which boasts other leisure occupiers Sealife Manchester and Legoland Discovery Centre, will “encourage dwell time within the shopping centre, attract levels of footfall and encourage linked trips, making a positive contribution to activity within the shopping centre”, according to a planning statement by consultancy WSP. 

Cushman & Wakefield is the retail agent for Barton Square. 

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The TC is the family destination in Manchester.

By PDM

I believe it would be better suited to restaurants. Plans are submitted for a state-of-the-art leisure spa adjacent to what is currently Event City.

This venture Hasbro and Rockafella should have looked at the former Jjb / soccer dome as a potential site. The floor space is perfect and could easily create a mezzanine level. Until the Trafford Waters project starts on the adjacent northern plot. There are others such as jump ninja that have taken factory warehouse for there start-ups. It’s only a short metrolink journey so would still aid shopping mixed with kids leisure activities.

I played here as a child when it was Dumplington, and have being documenting these areas from the air with a drone for the last two years and have some great shots of the buildings.

By Mike

Mike. You assume we didn’t look at that site. You’d be wrong. Unfortunately it was not feasible despite many positives. The plans at TC/Barton square are for leisure and F&B and as you know, the two go hand in hand very well. What other sites do you like in the area? Maybe you could assume Rocafella have other projects in the pipeline too!

By A Rocafella

When we start to return to some sort of normality later this year this area is going to be a great leisure destination especially when they build Therme next door.

By JohnP

Great idea. Played one in florida with a aliens etc etc really good and enjoyed by family. Environmen should be changed in order to keep footfall high. Maybe a pizza and fast food outlets within. But great idea, best of luck.

By Steven