Construction work has started to create four new speculative light industrial units as part of the latest expansion at Thorp Arch Estate near Wetherby.
The new units, being built for estate owner, Rockspring Hanover Property Unit Trust, will extend the existing Ash Way development and will be ready for occupation at the end of January 2019.
The £3m build will total 48,000 sq ft, including a fifth unit of 15,000 sq ft which has been pre-let to wholesale confectionery business, Bon Bon’s, founded in 2007 by general manager, Mark Rowntree, great grandson of confectionery entrepreneur and social reformer, Joseph Rowntree. Bon Bon’s first moved to Unit 1 Ash Way in 2014.
Of the remaining four speculative units, two will be 6,000 sq ft, one will be 9,000 sq ft and another at 12,000 sq ft. All are being fitted out to a high specification with seven-metre-eave warehouses, up-and-over loading doors, offices, LED lighting, loading yards and individual fibre connections for superfast broadband.
Tim Munns, director of Wharfedale Property Management, which manages Thorp Arch Estate, says: “There is a considerable demand from businesses wishing to come here and the new Ash Way units will help meet this need.
“The Ash Way development will comprise very-high quality units in our attractive parkland setting, which is equidistant between Leeds, York and Harrogate and very close to the A1 (M) motorway. We are already receiving interest from potential occupiers who are impressed that the fibre is being installed as part of the build.
“Bon Bon’s is a top-class national business with an important link to Yorkshire’s confectionery history and we are delighted that the company has agreed to become the first tenant in this exciting new development.”
Mark Rowntree says: “We are probably the UK’s largest hand-packing confectionery business and the additional space will allow us to re-organise our operation to provide more packing capacity in our existing unit and to use the new premises, which is now under construction, entirely as a bulk holding and dispatch warehouse.
“Wharfedale Property Management has been very supportive in helping us to expand. Thorp Arch Estate is a great location, Ash Way is an exciting scheme and we are looking forward to moving into our new unit in December.”
Construction of the latest phase of Ash Way is being managed by York-based property and construction consultants, the LHL Group, and built by York-based Lindum Group Ltd.
Lindum managing director, Jonathan Sizer, says: "The construction of new units on Thorp Arch Estate is bringing sought-after employment space to this part of Yorkshire and we look forward to delivering high-quality commercial premises."
The two-million sq ft Thorp Arch Estate is base for a diverse range of more than 160 businesses, from start-ups to large Plcs, operating in local, national and international markets and employing more than 2,000 people. Thorp Arch Retail Park, which forms part of the estate, was the first out-of-town shopping centre in the country when it opened in 1959 and is complemented by a variety of leisure facilities.