Grantham’s George Centre up for sale again following interest from potential buyers
The George Shopping Centre in Grantham has been put back on the market less than 18 months since it was last sold.
Present owner Atlantis Holdings says it has received a couple of good offers for the centre and is keen to take the opportunity to sell.
Atlantis Holdings, the investment arm of the Atlantis Group, bought the centre at the end of 2015 for £1.9 million.
But CEO Andrew Strong told the Journal its decision to sell was not down to poor performance.
Mr Strong said: “We have had some very, very credible companies come forward and offer to buy the scheme from us. They have been pestering us for a while and so we decided if they are so interested, the best way forward is to realise the best value for the property and put in on to the market.”
Mr Strong said he hopes to sell the centre directly to a buyer, but if that did not materialise then it could be sold at auction. He hopes the sale will go through in the next month.
Mr Strong denied that the centre had proven to be a bad buy.
He said: “The scheme has worked well for us, but we do buy and sell property and we feel this is a good opportunity at this time to move on.”
Mr Strong said that his company had rececived two good offers to fill two of the empty units in the centre, but would not say where those offers had come from.
He added: “We have made progress with the scheme and there has been movement.
“We are now out in the market and seeking the best offer.
“It is an absolutely stunning and beautiful centre and a really nice scheme and I completely understand that the community of Grantham want to see it do well.”
Last year, Atlantis Holdings said it was trying to attract more businesses to the centre by slashing service charges and creating leasing packages which businesses would find attractive.
But Lisa Richardson, who has run The Gift Box in the centre for almost five years, said that her charges had gone up. She said she would be relocating the business elsewhere in Grantham when her lease runs out in August.
She said: “We need to do all we can to get people into the centre and support local businesses.
“We have lost the centre management, the cleaners and security and yet they still put the charges up. They have not done anything to improve the centre at all.
“It should be the hub of the town and everybody says what a nice centre it is. Hopefully, we will get somebody who is going to want to do something with the centre and who can see some potential in it.”
Debbie Traynor, of the Juice-E-Vaporium, said: “I would like to see somebody come in who wants to do something with it. It’s a lovely shopping centre and I would like to see all the units filled.”
Pizza Express, Edinburgh Woollen Mill and Lunettes Opticians occupy units in the shopping centre but many remain empty.
Some businesses that occupy units in The George Centre told the Journal they had learned of the sale on social media.
n Tell us what you think – email comment@grantham journal.co.uk