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Retailers still committed despite regeneration construction delays

Published: 17 Jul 2014 09:301 comment

RETAILERS are still committed to being part of the regeneration of Bracknell town centre, despite building work not now starting until the new year.

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Building work will not begin until January at the earliest, with landlord Bracknell Regeneration Partnership (BRP) allowing current Charles Square traders to cash in over the Christmas period.

The BRP would then look to move traders out of Charles Square after Christmas, before beginning redevelopment of the site, as well as the former Crossway and Broadway area, which was demolished at the end of last year.

Anchor store Marks and Spencer has moved to quash rumours that it has pulled out of the project due to the delays surrounding the works. BRP’s marketing manager Helen Barnett also confirmed that all retailers signed up to take units at the new-look town centre were all fully behind the regeneration.

In a statement, Marks and Spencer said: “The rumours surrounding the company withdrawing its plans for an anchor store in the new town centre are not true.

“We are still fully committed to Bracknell.”

Utilities work in the sectioned-off part of The Ring is due to finish in the autumn, with contractors installing water pipes and electricity cables underneath the site ready for the redevelopment.

Ms Barnett said: “We decided to let traders in Charles Square stay for the Christmas period after consulting with them so they could drive up their profits before moving out of the site.

“It is really positive and we want to encourage shoppers to come to the town while there are still traders there and keep the town centre busy over Christmas.”

Ms Barnett also added that more announcements surrounding retailers signing up to the regeneration will be made over the coming months, including one next week.

She added: “There doesn’t look like there’s a lot going on but there’s a lot of hard work going on behind the scenes, as well as the utility work going on in The Ring.

“We have lots of exciting new retailers joining us which we will announce over the next few months.”

A contractor for the construction work has not yet been appointed. However, once this begins it is estimated it will take two years to complete.

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