Bespoke 100,000 sq ft warehouse for expanding sofa manufacturer

Superb new accommodation on J28 of M1 allows company to maximise potential

16 December 2015

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Acting for Sofa Brands International, Cooke & Arkwright has negotiated the leasing of a bespoke-build 100,000 sq ft industrial premises in Castlewood Business Park, Sutton in Ashfield, Derbyshire on a 20 year lease. The new purpose-design unit, on J28 of the M1 in the East Midlands, provides accommodation for the company’s Parker Knoll brand to expand its fast-growing manufacturing base as well as new office and storage facilities.

Director Jeremy Symons, who negotiated the deal on behalf of Sofa Brands International comments, “Parker Knoll had been on the Amber Industrial Estate, Riddings for over 30 years. With the leases coming to an end and an imminent rebranding, there was a desire to have a building befitting their quality product. Cooke & Arkwright was instructed two-and-a-half years ago to identify alternative premises to relocate to, preferably within short distance of their existing facility in order to retain the workforce.

“After a number of false starts it was thought the best option was to have a brand new building in the preferred location of Castlewood Business Park. Occupiers at the business park, which was developed by Clowes Developments, include Cooperative Food, Midland Aerospace, Bombadier, Meridian and UDG.

“We negotiated a leasing package with Clowes for 20 years, to provide the ideal building for Parker Knoll, which includes numerous tailgate loading doors, superb office facilities, excellent circulation space and good headroom. The building plot selected also provides significant frontage onto the A38 allowing Parker Knoll to fully exploit its position and maximise brand awareness.

“The building project has taken 12 months and practical completion took place on 1 December 2015. Our clients are in the process of fitting out the building with every expectation of reaching full production by the end of January 2016. The new building will provide Parker Knoll with the premises that complement their brand whilst also permitting expansion of their soft furnishings production.”

Cooke & Arkwright have been providing rating valuation advice to The Welsh Rugby Union Limited (“WRU”) and Millennium Stadium plc for many years. They were recently successful in achieving substantial reductions in the assessments of the Millennium Stadium, covering both the 2005 and 2010 rating list. These negotiated reductions yielded savings of c.£3.5m which, crucially, allows the WRU to re-invest in rugby throughout Wales. They advise the WRU across the group portfolio including the National Centre of Excellence in the Vale of Glamorgan. The valuation issues across the WRU portfolio are complex requiring a high level of understanding of the funding and finances of professional sport in Wales. Cooke & Arkwright’s experience and understanding of these issues and application to the rating valuation have yielded these substantial negotiated reductions. The WRU and the Millennium Stadium entrust our work to organisations with the required levels in experience and expertise in dealing with these complex issues. I am glad to say we have this expertise in Wales. I would have no hesitation in recommending ratepayers making use of this Welsh based expertise.

Steve Phillips, Group Finance Director, Welsh Rugby Union Group