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New shopping site is ‘pie in the sky’
9:30am Thursday 3rd October 2013 in News
TALK of a multi-million pound shopping and leisure complex in Worcester city centre has been dismissed as pie in the sky by one shop manager.
Paul Lester spoke out after news broke of plans to sell the Cornmarket car park and Trinity House, in Trinity Street and Queen Street, to a private developer.
However, Mr Lester wants customers of his business, Suites Direct in Trinity House, to know that his shop is not going anywhere after people began to speculate that he might be closing down.
As we reported, it is hoped that companies such as John Lewis, Gap or Zara could be tempted to the city to occupy the 62,000 square feet site which would be made possible by a joint sale of the two sites which are owned by the city and council councils.
Mr Lester said: “People have been phoning up to say, ‘Is our order all right?’ But it’s pie in the sky. It’s been going on for years. Everybody is panicking now that it’s sold, but it is not sold. It’s just talk and it will take years.
“I want people to know that we are here to stay. I’ve just been asked to sign another lease for two years and we are expanding to take on another part of the building where English Heritage used to be. That’s going through at the moment.”
Mr Lester also pointed out that under the terms of the sale any buyer would have to guarantee at least a ground floor of retail or leisure, leaving open the possibility of him staying put.
However, he said he knew of an alternative site he could move to if necessary.
The plan brings together the city council, which owns the 85-space car park, and the county council, which owns Trinity House, with both councils potentially making millions from a joint sale.
It is hoped that a new shopping centre on the site could provide a link between the High Street and the recently built £75 million St Martin’s Quarter complex.
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