Zoe Preston

RivingtonHark staff volunteer for local charity, Hackney Quest

RivingtonHark were pleased to let Zoe, our office manger, have time off to help support her local charity Hackney Quest during these challenging times.  Hackney Quest have been providing positive support to young people and families from Hackney since 1988.  They have developed their community services including parenting and nutrition classes, educational support, community volunteering and mentoring plus much more.

Zoe reflected “What a satisfying day and great way to give something back to the community by volunteering to help out at Hackney Quest, delivering hot food and food parcels to vulnerable families, elderly that are shielding and those from poorer backgrounds.  It felt very worthwhile to be helping out this fantastic charity.  Would definitely volunteer to help out again.”

RivingtonHark Secures New Council Asset Management Roles

RivingtonHark has been appointed to three new shopping centre Asset Management mandates by Local Authority investors: Victoria Centre, Southend; Baron's Quay, Northwich and Winsford Cross, Winsford.

RivingtonHark supported and advised Southend Borough Council on the acquisition of Victoria Centre, Southend (link to project page on website) and have been appointed to implement the immediate asset management business plan as well as advising on the potential reconfiguration and redevelopment options for the scheme. The shopping centre occupies a strategically important “gateway” site and will play a key role in the wider regeneration plans the Council have for the heart of the town. The ambition for the Victoria Centre is to provide a reinvigorated retail offer and home for other uses such as a public sector hub, residential, office, health and wellbeing, etc to help provide a truly vibrant town centre environment.

Chester Council and Cheshire West Council have appointed RivingtonHark on both Baron’s Quay, Northwich and Winsford Cross, Winsford. The Council’s vision for both town centres is to create dynamic and relevant places with RivingtonHark’s expertise and experience in delivering leasing, placemaking and marketing strategies a key part of this.

Winsford has been successful in securing close to £10m of Future High Street funding. RivingtonHark will play a key role in developing the plans to regenerate the town centre, working alongside Cheshire West as strategic advisors on land assembly, leasing and placemaking to deliver a successful and sustainable future for Winsford. The investment funding will be used to improve the customer experience through environmental and public realm enhancements as well as developing the retail and leisure offer. While the work is done to bring these improvements forward RivingtonHark will focus on ensuring footfall and occupancy at Winsford Cross is maintained.

Mark Harvey, Director and Head of Asset Management at RivingtonHark said: “These are really exciting projects to be involved with as they are all aimed at revitalising town centres through asset intervention which is what RivingtonHark excels at and loves to be part of.”


RivingtonHark is at the Forefront of Seeking Changes to the Rating System for the Retail and Leisure Property Industry

Mark Williams, Executive Director of RivingtonHark and other CEOs of major food stores call for an urgent change to the rating system.

RivingtonHark and a string of other retailers; Shop workers Union and landlords  have united to demand a “level playing field” in the tax system as the coronavirus pandemic wreaks havoc on high street jobs.

Ahead of the chancellor’s budget next month, the letter to Rishi Sunak warned that 15,000 jobs had already been lost this year in the retail sector and there would be “many more to come” without a string of reforms.

The executives and leaders of 18 firms including Asda, Tesco Pets at Home , RivingtonHark and Hammerson, argued online retailers should pay similar levels of tax to brick and mortar firms. They called for a permanent reduction in business rates as part of the shake-up.

A rates holiday, initiated by the chancellor last year to help retail, hospitality and leisure businesses, is due to expire at the end of March.

The letter said: “Reducing business rates for retailers and rebalancing the tax system to ensure online retailers pay a fair share of tax would be revenue-neutral, provide a vital boost to bricks and mortar retailers and support communities in need of levelling up.”

Mark Williams, Director of RivingtonHark commented: “The Rating system and its impact is damaging the health and well being of this sector. Put simply, there needs to be a level playing field between bricks and mortar occupiers and on line retail, otherwise there will be no high street to collect any form of tax.”

Castle Quarter, Norwich hosts new mass Covid-19 vaccination centre

England’s first mass Covid-19 vaccination centre to open in a shopping centre gave its first vaccinations on Monday 18th January in Castle Quarter, Norwich.

RivingtonHark, asset managers for Castle Quarter, has helped facilitate the first NHS vaccination centre in Norfolk and the first in a shopping centre in the UK. Part of the biggest vaccination programme in NHS history this centre is accelerating the delivery of the life-saving jab to the Norwich and Norfolk community.  The shopping centre’s food court level, given its central location, facilities and access to parking, has been completely taken over by the NHS for around nine months or until the vaccination programme is complete.

Mark Harvey, Head of Asset Management at RivingtonHark commented: “It is fantastic to see the facility open as we have been working on ways to help with the COVID effort since the outbreak last year. Our team and centre management has worked tirelessly with the NHS team over the last few months to ensure this Vaccination Centre could open as soon as the NHS were ready. I would like to thank all of those involved and wish the NHS Vaccination Team the best of luck over the coming months.”

RivingtonHark Grows Asset Management Team as Business Continues to Expand

RivingtonHark welcomes back Sarah McVicar to support Asset Management business growth

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Sarah McVicar as Senior Asset Manager. Sarah rejoins the business following 2 years working at Chester West and Chester Council as Strategic Asset Manager where she played a key role in the Council’s regeneration projects including Chester Northgate; Baron’s Quay, Northwich town centre and Winsford Cross.

These projects required Sarah’s expertise and network of contacts across asset management, leasing and placemaking to deliver key initiatives including lettings to a diverse collection of uses as well as aesthetic enhancements improving the environment and customer experience.

Sarah has also spent 15 years at Intu Properties Plc responsible for the performance of some of the UK’s top 20 shopping centres including Lakeside, Metrocentre and Eldon Square, Newcastle.  This included working with the development team to deliver major retail and leisure extensions at Lakeside and Eldon Square.

We also welcome Isabella Hitchcock to the Asset Management team after completing a successful secondment period with us. Isabella joins from Knight Frank’s Retail Agency team where she dealt with leasing and acquisitions.

Mark Harvey, Director and Head of Asset Management at RivingtonHark said: “The retail and leisure world is clearly facing huge challenges and it is fantastic to have someone of Sarah’s experience and expertise join the business at this pivotal time as we navigate this change and continue to grow our business. I am also pleased to formally welcome Bella to the team and look forward to continuing to work with her in delivering investor objectives and developing her career. ”

Sarah McVicar commented: “This is such an exciting time for RivingtonHark with so many interesting projects to get involved with. Despite the exceptionally challenging market the business is thriving and I am delighted to be joining the team to help add value to the assets under their management.”

Let the games begin in Newbury!

Amusement Arcade operator High Score becomes the latest addition to the Kennet Centre, Newbury

RivingtonHark are the asset managers of the Kennet Centre on behalf of Lochailort and are pleased to announce the exciting new letting to Amusement Arcade operator High Score, who have taken 4,411 sq ft of space.

High Score is a free-play amusement centre, packed with over 60 games to either reminisce or play for the first time. From old school classics including Space Invaders and PAC-man to pinball, sports games and the newest arcade fun, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Put the pedal to the metal and go head-to-head with your friends on the latest racing games or challenge your family and see who can reach the highest spot on the High Score leader board. Whether you’re looking for a family day out, a date night idea or a fun-filled day with friends, High Score has got you covered.

High Score adds to the experiential offering in the Kennet Centre and given the pandemic and the second lockdown we are thrilled to have completed this letting and to see them open their doors on the 4th December.

Milestone month for the £1billion Swansea Transformation

A Milestone Moment in one of Wales' most high profile current regeneration schemes

This week alone we have announced a new name and brand for the £135million cultural district formerly known as ‘Swansea Central’ (now Copr Bay), launched pioneering technology that allows visitors to peer into the future, and virtually celebrated the Topping Out of the 3,500 capacity state-of-the-art arena and conference centre.

Swansea is fast-becoming a world-class destination for human-centred digital innovation, which was the inspiration behind a partnership with Swansea University to create the Lookout – a new public engagement area with interactive visuals showcasing how the city will look as the development unfolds.

Today’s Topping Out of Copr Bay’s Arena has been adapted into a virtual celebration, allowing us to mark the milestone despite social restrictions. See below to view the specially-created video.

Watch the video

Each of these milestones represents @SwanseaCouncil’s undeterred determination in allowing Swansea to realise its potential as one of the most exciting places to live, work, study and visit in the UK.

RivingtonHark is proud to be the Development Manager on a scheme that has become a major catalyst for change in the city-wide transformation.

New World Trading Company to bring The Florist to Chester

RivingtonHark are pleased to announce a major new letting for the Chester Scheme

RivingtonHark, leasing manager of the Chester Northgate development on behalf of Cheshire West and Chester Council is delighted to announce a major new F&B letting for the scheme. New World Trading Company is to bring its The Florist brand to the scheme in a 8,600sq ft bar/restaurant fronting both Town Hall Square and the new Market Square in the heart of the development.  The Florist joins Picturehouse, Tapas Revolution and Cosy Club to the scheme which is currently under construction and due for completion in the spring of 2022.

David Lewis, Executive Director of RivingtonHark and lead on the Chester project commented “Considering the pandemic, the second lockdown and the impact on the F&B sector it is especially pleasing to have secured such a high profile letting for Chester Northgate.  It is also testimony to the quality of the scheme and Chester that we are still managing to attract such quality operators to this new development.”

Runcorn Shopping City served upto 300+ school meals last week

The Marcus Rashford effect has swept Runcorn and Widnes as residents, businesses and officials rallied to make sure no child goes without food during the half-term

In a week when the England international Marcus Rashford has rallied support in his bid to take on the government in the fight to provide free meals for schoolchildren, Runcorn’s Shopping City answered his call and served up 300+ meals during half term.

Among those stepping in to help were Runcorn Linnets football club in a collaboration with Runcorn Shopping City, the Queen of Hearts pub, Apec Taxis, and a joint effort from All or Nothing.
Halton Borough Council were also quick to commit to continue providing food to children eligible for free school meals.

Runcorn Shopping City Centre Manager Dave Pearman quoted: “Many will be aware of the inspiring work done by Marcus Rashford raising awareness so that children receive free school meals. As a team here at Runcorn Shopping City this inspired us to work with local businesses to see how we could help those in need this half term. Despite challenging times we have been blown away with people’s generosity donating fruit, drinks, snacks and taxi delivery services, not to mention Sayers and Saints and Sinners@prep2go who have prepared fresh sandwiches each morning.

This isn’t about publicity but showing people hope and kindness, this is another example of how people and businesses within the local community come together to help each other out. We hope everyone remains safe and well and we look forward to seeing all our visitors return when they are able to do so.”

We congratulate the Runcorn City team for their efforts in supporting the free school meals campaign.

First Glimpse of Kennet Centre Newbury’s Regeneration Plans

Future of Newbury's Kennet Shopping centre revealed with launch of the ‘Eagle Quarter’ Consultation

Lochailort Newbury Ltd and RivingtonHark have announced a public consultation on the comprehensive regeneration plans that will transform the old, outdated shopping centre into a new, vibrant, mixed‐use, high-quality development.

The scheme is one of the first in the county to be designed specifically to address the changing landscape of the high streets and will breathe new life into the key town centre site, taking inspiration from the town’s heritage.

The proposal is for

  • Around 30 new flexible shops, restaurants and co‐working spaces carefully curated with a focus on independent, local and artisan businesses
  • Around 400 new homes of different kinds from studio flats to three-bedroom homes, including a number purposely‐designed for rent which include ‘class‐leading residents’ amenities’
  • New pedestrianised streets providing new links between town’s railway and bus stations and the shops in Northbrook Street.
  • New public spaces to open up the town centre
  • Enhancements to the existing cinema/food & beverage offering, plus improvements to the existing multi‐storey car park including additional parking spaces and electric vehicle charging points
  • A new highly-sustainable headquarters office building or, alternatively, a retirement living community

The scheme aims to minimise fossil fuels and use a range of renewable energy solutions which will save at least 240 tonnes of CO2 emissions a year.

RivingtonHark will continue to asset manage the existing centre on behalf of the investor. RivingtonHark said that demand existed from independent and local occupiers who want space in an attractive environment and they would continue to engage with local occupiers as part of the project and Eagle Quarter sought to retain the best elements.

Consultation launches on Thursday, October 29 at www.eaglequarter.com and with an exhibition opening the same day in the Kennet Centre.

Following  public feedback a formal planning application will be submitted  to West Berkshire Council before the end of the year.