M&S moves into town's expanding shopping centre
BOSSES at Yate Shopping Centre have announced that three new tenants will be arriving at the complex by next spring.
Work is due to start on an extension to the shopping centre which will house the new arrivals. The work will start next month on a new 50,000 square foot extension directly opposite the new Tesco Extra in East Walk.
The new building will be home to a branch of M&S Simply Food, a Costa cafe and a new Sports Direct store.
The existing toilets in East Walk are being demolished before the work on the extension gets under way.
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New loos will be built in West Walk and will be ready in time for the completion of the new shops in East Walk. Temporary toilets will be installed during building work
Andrew Lowrey, the manager of the shopping centre, said: "We will be working to keep disruption to a minimum over the coming months.
"The development is part of the owner's plan to ensure that Yate Shopping Centre remains a top shopping destination." He added: "There is a high demand for larger retail units to accommodate high street names, even during the current tough economic environment.
"We expect to announce a tenant for the remaining unit in the near future. "We anticipate the building works will be complete by March next year.
"The last 12 months have been a tough but exciting year for the centre. Wetherspoons has been trading well and we have seen various changes in operators due to the economic climate.
"However, the arrival of M&S Simply Food, Sports Direct and Costa will be a major boost for us next year."
Yate Shopping Centre will be talking to its tenants, shoppers and local residents about the work in the next couple of weeks. Despite the problems on the High Street, the South Gloucestershire centre is one of the most successful in the Bristol area.
The centre already has a number of high profile names but the arrival of Marks & Spencer is being seen as a major coup.
The arrival of a new Tesco store last year has increased the number of people visiting the centre.
The collapse of the Peacock's clothing chain led to the arrival of Poundland at the Yate complex.
Mr Lowrey believes the centre is now competing against bigger rivals in the Bristol area.
He said: "The figures show that in addition to drawing back those customers who may have shopped elsewhere during the construction of the new Tesco Extra, we have also attracted new customers. The centre is now a destination shopping centre and is more than just a local facility."