Sale agreed for Skipton High Street retail complex

Craven Herald: ARTIST’S IMPRESSION: The public area part of the new Maple Grove development in Skipton High Street ARTIST’S IMPRESSION: The public area part of the new Maple Grove development in Skipton High Street

Work on the controversial shops and cafe development at 9 High Street and land behind Skipton Town Hall is due to start soon.

Craven District Council announced just before Christmas that it had finally completed the long-awaited £850,000 sale of the land to developers Maple Grove Developments and that work would start “early in the New Year”.

The £5 million development will see two new cafe/restaurants, including a Pizza Express, in a new building on the site of the 50-year-old former clinic at 9 High Street, which is due to be demolished in the first phase of the development.

There will also be four new shops, including, it is believed, a Clitheroe-based Dawson’s department store.

They will be housed in a block to be called Albion Place, which will be built on land currently used as a car park behind the town hall and facing onto Marks & Spencer.

The small staff car park will remain open throughout the New Year holiday before being closed to make way for the development - about the same time as Yorkshire Water closes up to half of Coach Street car park for the building of an underground reservoir.

Council leader Coun Chris Knowles-Fitton (Cons), said the development was good news for the town and for Craven.

“It will create jobs and will make more retail space available within the town centre. This development is a great investment for Skipton and a real boost for Craven in this tough economic climate,” he said.

In a brochure put out at the end of summer marketing the development as a “prime retail funding opportunity”, Maple Grove highlighted Cotswold outdoor shop as one of its signed up tenants, in addition to Pizza Express, Brantano Shoes, and Next, which currently has a shop in the High Street.

It also included Dawson’s department store as a tenant soon to be signed up. Dawson’s deals in a variety of high-quality household items, including barbecues and cookware.

Earlier in the year, the council’s finance manager warned councillors that the council’s capital programme was dependent on the council receiving payment for land sales, including 9 High Street and Granville Street, where a residential development has been approved.

Comments (5)

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11:00am Thu 27 Dec 12

Skipton Ratepayer says...

We do not need 2 new cafes or restaurants. We have plenty already, some small local businesses, not to mention the dreaded Costa and Nero. Add Pizza Express and we'll have another boring identikit High Street - why would anyone bother to vist when they have all those at home?

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We do not need 2 new cafes or restaurants. We have plenty already, some small local businesses, not to mention the dreaded Costa and Nero. Add Pizza Express and we'll have another boring identikit High Street - why would anyone bother to vist when they have all those at home? . Skipton Ratepayer

3:54pm Thu 27 Dec 12

ZoidbergDR says...

Personally i think this is a great piece of news for the town. Granted it's not something that will pull in the tourists but it's something the younger residents of Skipton may enjoy. It's fantastic that something new is being introduced that people who live in the town can benefit from.
Personally i think this is a great piece of news for the town. Granted it's not something that will pull in the tourists but it's something the younger residents of Skipton may enjoy. It's fantastic that something new is being introduced that people who live in the town can benefit from. ZoidbergDR

8:43am Fri 28 Dec 12

Lord Newbold says...

Skipton is a historic town somewhat like Colchester, in Essex. Colchester also has gone through renovations over the years, and survived. No doubt, Skipton will suffer some up evil during the demolition and re building. However, building an underground reservoir will cause more disruption for a much longer period. Not actually sure where this underground reservoir is going to be located, however, the amount of earth moving equipment that will be in operation, and tons of soil and whatever is laid beneath having to either be disposed of, or stockpiled for use at the completion stage.

We also hear that very famous adage “Jobs will be created” Retail businesses require customers with cash to purchase goods. Surely, Coun Chris Knowles-Fitton will be fully aware of the cuts in benefits that are planned by our Coalitions Government, and the reduction in Government grants to local Authorities. Causing them to make some of its employee’s redundant. He will also be aware that our Coalition is also seeking ways of controlling benefits so the receiver can only purchase essential items. I wonder if restaurant (Pizza and Coffee) will be considered essential or none essential, when paying 20% vat for the service.
Skipton is a historic town somewhat like Colchester, in Essex. Colchester also has gone through renovations over the years, and survived. No doubt, Skipton will suffer some up evil during the demolition and re building. However, building an underground reservoir will cause more disruption for a much longer period. Not actually sure where this underground reservoir is going to be located, however, the amount of earth moving equipment that will be in operation, and tons of soil and whatever is laid beneath having to either be disposed of, or stockpiled for use at the completion stage. We also hear that very famous adage “Jobs will be created” Retail businesses require customers with cash to purchase goods. Surely, Coun Chris Knowles-Fitton will be fully aware of the cuts in benefits that are planned by our Coalitions Government, and the reduction in Government grants to local Authorities. Causing them to make some of its employee’s redundant. He will also be aware that our Coalition is also seeking ways of controlling benefits so the receiver can only purchase essential items. I wonder if restaurant (Pizza and Coffee) will be considered essential or none essential, when paying 20% vat for the service. Lord Newbold

9:27am Sat 29 Dec 12

annoyed59 says...

Pizza Express isn't a bad thing. It's much better than an overpriced cup of tea and a slice of cake but retail in the high street has been on the way out for years and this year the growth if Internet sales has put paid to some big retailers. I've seen the "if you build it they will come" mentality fail in other locations. The bottom line is Craven like a lot of other authorities is strapped for cash so they have had to sell assets but after these big sales they have nothing else and the money for them had already been accounted for so it will be interesting to see how they balance the books in 2013/2014
Pizza Express isn't a bad thing. It's much better than an overpriced cup of tea and a slice of cake but retail in the high street has been on the way out for years and this year the growth if Internet sales has put paid to some big retailers. I've seen the "if you build it they will come" mentality fail in other locations. The bottom line is Craven like a lot of other authorities is strapped for cash so they have had to sell assets but after these big sales they have nothing else and the money for them had already been accounted for so it will be interesting to see how they balance the books in 2013/2014 annoyed59

12:32pm Sat 29 Dec 12

Lord Newbold says...

annoyed59 wrote:
Pizza Express isn't a bad thing. It's much better than an overpriced cup of tea and a slice of cake but retail in the high street has been on the way out for years and this year the growth if Internet sales has put paid to some big retailers. I've seen the "if you build it they will come" mentality fail in other locations. The bottom line is Craven like a lot of other authorities is strapped for cash so they have had to sell assets but after these big sales they have nothing else and the money for them had already been accounted for so it will be interesting to see how they balance the books in 2013/2014
annoyed59.
While I consider Pizza’s to be a very doughy food, I think you may be correct about overpriced Tea and a slice of cake shops. Yet why are these English teashops so expensive? Could it be the Business Rate, and that dreaded V.A.T.? Assets once disposed of will never belong to the people again. One question, that our Councillors need to answer do they feel that during these times of Coalition Rules, are our assets being sold cheaply due to the cuts imposed by central government? According to many statements made by members of parliament “We are all supposed to be in this together”, if central Government can impose spending restrictions and cap various wage and salary increases. Why do they not cap our service suppliers? Gas, Water, Electricity, Petrol and Diesel, which would, certainly would assist everyone.
[quote][p][bold]annoyed59[/bold] wrote: Pizza Express isn't a bad thing. It's much better than an overpriced cup of tea and a slice of cake but retail in the high street has been on the way out for years and this year the growth if Internet sales has put paid to some big retailers. I've seen the "if you build it they will come" mentality fail in other locations. The bottom line is Craven like a lot of other authorities is strapped for cash so they have had to sell assets but after these big sales they have nothing else and the money for them had already been accounted for so it will be interesting to see how they balance the books in 2013/2014[/p][/quote]annoyed59. While I consider Pizza’s to be a very doughy food, I think you may be correct about overpriced Tea and a slice of cake shops. Yet why are these English teashops so expensive? Could it be the Business Rate, and that dreaded V.A.T.? Assets once disposed of will never belong to the people again. One question, that our Councillors need to answer do they feel that during these times of Coalition Rules, are our assets being sold cheaply due to the cuts imposed by central government? According to many statements made by members of parliament “We are all supposed to be in this together”, if central Government can impose spending restrictions and cap various wage and salary increases. Why do they not cap our service suppliers? Gas, Water, Electricity, Petrol and Diesel, which would, certainly would assist everyone. Lord Newbold

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