Chorley’s Market Walk shopping centre has been sold for £22million.
The shock move comes after commercial property group Orchard Street Investment Management finalised a deal with owner RREEF to buy the centre on Monday.
The sale comes with planning permission for Market Walk phase two, a multi-million pound development that could change the face of Chorley town centre, which was given the go-ahead in February.
The scheme, submitted under RREEF, would mean the creation of multiple new retail units and a multi-storey car park.
Traders in the town have welcomed the news, saying the buy-out is reassuring for the town’s future.
Malcolm Allen, chairman of Chorley Traders’ Alliance, said: “There have been rumours circulating since the beginning of the year and if someone is willing to invest in the town then that is a positive step.
“If this new company is going to keep the commitment of the previous owner and are still planning on expanding Market Walk then it can only be good news for the town.”
Orchard Street Investment has properties across the country and owns three retail parks in Chelmford, Bournemouth, and Bangor as well as offices in London.
The purchase of Market Walk for £22.25million will make up part of the company’s Special Situations Fund.
Barney Rowe, partner at Orchard Street Investment Management, said: “We’ve only just bought the centre but, in principle, we would like to work with Chorley Council to take the planning consent for this scheme forward.”
“We want to keep existing tenants in place and will work to bring high quality tenants in as and when vacancies arise.”
Cath Burns, Chorley Council’s head of economic development, said: “It’s good news that the sale has gone through so quickly in the current market.”