Legal & General “still working hard” on plans to extend Grosvenor Centre

Simon Russian from Legal & General shows shoppers plans for the centre's expansion in 2011
Simon Russian from Legal & General shows shoppers plans for the centre's expansion in 2011

The owners of Northampton’s Grosvenor Centre have insisted they are still pushing forward with plans to expand the mall and suggested the wealth of developments currently happening in the town is sparking interest from retailers.

The firm’s head of retail development, Simon Russian, visited Northampton’s Guildhall on Friday morning to watch a presentation about the number of successful development projects which are currently happening in the town, including the development of new railway and bus stations and plans for a new headquarters for Northamptonshire County Council.

Speaking after the presentation, Mr Russian said he hoped such projects would inspire retailers to commit to an extended Grosvenor Centre.

He said: “With the number of things there are happening in Northampton, it enables us to market the town as a place for business, which is fantastic.

“It’s difficult to predict a timescale for our plans, but having cranes on the skyline always persuades other people to invest.”

Initial plans for the redevelopment of the Grosvenor Centre were first drawn up in 2000.

In June last year, Legal & General announced they had scrapped the latest version of the scheme and pledged new plans would be put forward in the new year.

Mr Russian said work was now progressing well on that new scheme.

He said: “We’re continuing to work very hard on our plans. We went back to the drawing board last year, but we’re now talking to the council every fortnight and we’re working hard to sell Northampton to the retail fraternity.

“It’s quite a difficult process with the market being as it is, but we’re continuing to work on it and we’re absolutely committed to redeveloping the Grosvenor Centre.

“It’s not easy in the current climate as we all know, but we’re working very hard.”