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Sailmakers Shopping Centre in Ipswich sees Morrisons and HMV commit to long-term contracts as Poundland decides to stay





A pair of big name brands have committed their futures to a Suffolk shopping centre by signing long-term contacts with its owners.

The ALB Group, who are the Nottingham-based owner of Sailmakers Shopping Centre in Ipswich have announced that Morrisons and HMV will be staying in the Tavern Street complex just weeks after Poundland said it was reversing its decision to close its store there.

Morrisons has signed a new 10-year lease on its fully refurbished 2,640 sq ft Morrisons Daily convenience store, near to the Sailmakers bus station entrance in Tower Ramparts.

The Sailmakers Shopping Centre in Ipswich. Picture submitted
The Sailmakers Shopping Centre in Ipswich. Picture submitted

Meanwhile, HMV has signed a new five-year lease on its 4,000 sq ft neighbouring unit.

Arran Bailey, ALB Group’s managing director, said: “Arran said: “My vision was to save these town centres and other retail sites by approaching the situation very differently from traditional landlords.

“By offering more affordable and far more flexible terms to our tenants, we’ve encouraged many smaller, independent and niche businesses to launch their businesses.

Poundland in Sailmakers Shopping Centre, Ipswich, is set to close after 10 years of business. Picture: Submitted
Poundland in Sailmakers Shopping Centre, Ipswich, is set to close after 10 years of business. Picture: Submitted

“This has revitalised the locations we have been targeting, attracted more shoppers and, as a result, the bigger, national retail brands are recognising that these sites are great places to be.

“We’re delighted that Morrisons, HMV and Poundland have all chosen to remain at Sailmakers. It really does show that big name brands have got renewed confidence in Sailmakers shopping centre.”

The deals represent a major coup for ALB Group, which bought the once-struggling centre in 2022 with the intention of transforming its future.

Sailmakers, which links Tower Ramparts Bus Station and Tavern Street, is one of a number of prime retail properties across the UK that ALB Group has acquired in recent months and years.

Sailmakers Shopping Centre was bought by ALB Group in 2022. Picture: Ash Jones
Sailmakers Shopping Centre was bought by ALB Group in 2022. Picture: Ash Jones

Oliver Marshall, director of commercial property agent FHP, which is marketing the Sailmakers site on behalf of ALB, said: “We're delighted to have secured these national brands on a long-term basis with good market terms.

“Morrisons, HMV and Poundland are true giants of the retail sector, so to see them commit to a long-term future at the centre is wonderful.

He added: "As a result of these renewed leases, we are hopeful of filling the final vacant units at Sailmakers very soon. Some very positive negotiations are ongoing with a number of prospective businesses."