Express & Star

Landmark Wolverhampton Beatties site on the market for £7.5m

The landmark Beatties store site in Wolverhampton city centre has gone on the market for £7.5 million.

The Beatties building in Victoria Street

The iconic former Beatties department store in Victoria Street, is set in a designated regeneration zone.

The site is 376,636 sq ft and includes a multi-storey car park. It has existing planning permission for more than 400 residential units.

It has been listed for freehold sale through Robert Irving Burns, the commercial agents and investment specialists.

The building, which has a striking Art Deco facade, has two significant planning approvals for conversion and the construction of residential units, with zero affordable housing provision needed nor Section 106 agreements.

Three additional buildings and a yard are included within the sale, but are excluded from the approved planning consents, offering further development opportunity subject to planning permission.

The site has a gross development value of £70 million.

Some of the site's preliminary demolition and groundworks has been completed.

RIB is acting on behalf of receivers Alexander Lawson Surveyors for KSEYE Capital.

The West Midlands Combined Authority has also produced a letter of intent providing levelling up/gap funding.

Antony Antoniou, chief executive of RIB, said: “This is a rare opportunity to purchase an iconic piece of real estate, which marks a cornerstone for the wider regeneration of Wolverhampton town centre.

"The buyer would be able to start work immediately, as the site has the full backing of the local council, who are keen to recommence building works, and benefits from £4 million of initial works already complete. Given the site’s central location and no affordable housing or S106 allocation, it provides the right buyer with an excellent investment opportunity.”

RIB is one of the largest independent real estate services companies, specialising in investment, commercial and residential property – with more than £1 billion in total sales and £200 million in active listings.

The Beatties building, which dates back to the 1920s, hasd been empty for three years since its last occupier House of Fraser moved to smaller unit in the Mander Centre.

It was bought for £3m by SSYS Beatties, run by Pragnesh Modhwadia, who announced plans to turn it into a mixture of flats and retail use.

In March 2021, the developer was granted permission to redevelop the building, retaining retail units at ground floor level and turning the upper floors into 300 apartments. The plan failed to materialise.

A second scheme, to demolish Beatties’ multi-storey car park and the Gorgeous nightclub and replace it with 145 flats, was given the go-ahead in January, but again did not go ahead.

In September Wolverhampton Council served an enforcement notice for the site to be tided up.

Last month it emerged that SSYS Beatties had been placed in receivership after defaulting on a loan from Kseyes Capital.