Several globally-recognised fashion, retail and hospitality brands are currently in legal negotiations to open, covering nearly one fifth of the development’s total space say Rioja Estates, the developer behind the project, and premium and high street brands are continuing to express strong interest in the state-of-the-art outlet .
This new outlet destination will bring more than £100 million in investment and create around 1,500 permanent jobs when it opens, signalling new strength in the physical retail and outlet sector, and further strides towards becoming the leading designer outlet destination in the East Midlands.
Alongside a selection of restaurants and coffee shops, the first phase of the 270,000 sq ft development will bring up to 90 premium and globally recognised, high street and independent labels to the region, all priced at up to 70 per cent off the RRP. The second phase is set to bring a further 50 internationally recognised brands. Complementary to the in-store shopping experience, the Grantham Designer Outlet Village will be the first new designer outlet in the UK to offer a transactional website via its partner Wishibam, which will allow shoppers to browse and buy fashion, footwear, and accessories online from the designer outlet’s participating brands.
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, the changing retail landscape and the shift to online shopping, plus concerns about the impact of the UK having left the European Union, on site works began on the Grantham Designer Outlet Village in March this year, and the scheme has drawn significant interest from brands that are based outside of the region, which will give shoppers in the region access to these popular brands without the need to travel long distances.
Giles Membrey, Managing Director of Rioja Estates, said: “We’re on track, and delighted with the progress we are making with brands that we know locals and visitors from afar will want to shop and experience. The Grantham Designer Outlet Village will bring premium fashion and retail brands within comfortable driving distance of the likes of Nottingham, Leicester, Cambridge, Peterborough, and Lincoln. Beyond those benefits to shoppers, the scheme will bring over £100 million in direct investment to the region and create around 1,500 permanent jobs when it opens, bringing tremendous opportunities for local residents and businesses.”
With 3.5 million visitors expected, trends from existing outlet villages suggest that Grantham town centre and local attractions can expect around an additional 350,000 new visitors per year, or an average of nearly 1,000 per day, thanks to shoppers also visiting the designer outlet village. It will bring with it a new, high-quality bus infrastructure shuttling between the station, town centre, and the outlet village, both to provide easy access to Grantham residents and those visiting from farther afield. The new transport links put in place by the developer are expected to further encourage visitors from across the East Midlands to visit Grantham town centre and enjoy the local and independent shops on the high street.
Rioja Estates is developing the scheme in partnership with Buckminster, the family-owned, Grantham-based property investor, which has a centuries-old relationship with the town and a vested interest in ensuring the town centre thrives as a landlord of many of the high street businesses.
The design of the Outlet Village is inspired by the surrounding Lincolnshire countryside, featuring architecture that combines traditional forms and contemporary finishes, next to a newly constructed junction on the A1.
It will be outlet retail specialists Rioja Estates’ sixth outlet development in the UK, closely following on from the McArthurGlen Designer Outlet West Midlands which opened in Spring 2021.