The Range to open distribution centre at Stowmarket’s Gateway 14
Homeware and garden furniture retailer The Range is set to open a distribution centre at a new business park in a multi-million pound deal.
The retail giant will launch the 1.2m sq ft facility at Gateway 14 in Stowmarket as part of a £200m investment - a move which will help meet consumer demand in the South and South East.
Gateway 14 is being constructed at junction 50 of the A14 and will create about 1,650 new jobs.
It has outline planning consent for a 2.36m sq ft mixed-use innovation, business and warehousing scheme and construction is well under way.
Alex Simpkin, CEO of The Range, said: “This acquisition represents a £200m investment and is integral to our expansion plans.
“We were naturally attracted to the site due to its commitment to sustainability and proximity to the East coast container port of Felixstowe.
“The Freeport benefits that Gateway 14 provides allows us to evolve our ecommerce division nationwide and accelerate store growth."
The Range has 200 stores nationwide and already has two distribution centres.
The company has more than 100 stores planned to be developed over the next five years, alongside growing a stronger online presence.
Sir Christopher Haworth, chairman Gateway 14 Ltd, said: “Welcoming The Range to Gateway 14 is a significant step forward for the site and demonstrates its important position in Suffolk and the wider Eastern region.
“Gateway 14 has huge potential not only for nationally important brands like The Range, but also to support local and small businesses.”
A reserved matters application is to be submitted in July with a proposed start on site in January 2023 and completion in autumn 2023.
Gateway 14 Ltd, owned by Mid Suffolk District Council, has exchanged contracts for the distribution centre.
Cllr Suzie Morley, leader of Mid Suffolk District Council said: “Working in partnership with renowned home and leisure retailer, The Range, will provide a huge boost to Gateway 14 and will create a considerable number of new jobs for local people.
"As the development continues, I look forward to welcoming more businesses to the site.”
Ben Oughton, Development Director of Jaynic, added: “Securing such a significant first occupier, only months after we started building the infrastructure at Gateway 14, demonstrates how important a location the A14 corridor has become, and is borne out by the huge interest there is in Gateway 14, with its Freeport benefits and proximity to Felixstowe."