New boss of Haymarket Shopping Centre is positive for the future
Despite the high profile loss of the Co-op Supermaket recently, the new boss of the Haymarket Shopping Centre says the centre has a positive future.
Tony Spencer, who took over running the centre three months ago, is currently working on filling the remaining five units in the Haymarket that remain empty.
The unit previously held by the Co-op is to be taken over by Poundworld – who are moving from their current site in the Haymarket to the bigger unit – which means 5 of the 60 units will still be empty.
Spencer said his focus will be on ‘fashion and food’:
“We’re actively looking at a new tenant for the Poundworld unit, and one is close to being put forward. At the moment, we can’t say who that is, but it is definitely being pushed forward.
“For me, the two main elements that are missing from Haymarket are fashion and food. They need to be built on. But I think most towns and cities are struggling with that concept, and trying to find the balance between having enough fashion quality as well as value.
“There are quite a few brands in Australia, Europe and America now who would be well suited to the UK.”
The Haymarket is looking to capitalise on the recent rise of Leicester’s profile – thanks to Richard III and the Rugby World Cup this year – and Spencer hopes this will lead to bigger and more established brands wanting to take up retail space.
In recent months the likes of Krispy Kreme and TGI Friday’s have confirmed new outlets in the city, and the Haymarket had a recent fillip when lingerie chain Ann Summers reopened their store in the centre.
Anyone who has ventured into the Haymarket in recent times will know that Tony Spencer has a bit of a job on his hands to make it an attractive shopping destination – especially with the nearby Highcross Shopping Centre going from strength to strength.
Regarding the competition with the Highcross, Tony said:
“We don’t compete with Highcross as we bring the same people into Leicester. We sit side by side and help each other to grow the economy of Leicester.
“Haymarket just so happens to be more on the value end, with brands such as Primark. The centre has developed over the years and has been a value brand destination. There is no plan to change that as there is still a market-place for that, and there is still a need for them.