Plans for West Central, the GBP50m family leisure development in Bournemouth, are progressing with the confirmation that Odeon will be the cinema operator and Legal & General Property (LGP) will fund the scheme.
Odeon, the largest cinema group in Europe, has signed a pre-let with West Central developer Licet Holdings and site owner NCP.
Chris Dymond, director of Licet Holdings, says: “Odeon is at the forefront of cinema and we are delighted that the formal agreement has been signed, as are the leading restaurant operators for whom we’ve always been the preferred choice, with the initial letting phase of 12 units fully secured. With the funding in place, this is the final piece of the jigsaw for West Central to bring a fantastic new attraction and experience right into the very centre of Bournemouth for locals and visitors to enjoy year-round.”
West Central will link the town centre, sea front and Lower Gardens, providing an all-weather attraction for locals and visitors, providing a boost of around 500 new jobs. It is expected to take around 18 months to build and will be opposite another new GBP60m development that is currently underway to create a five star Hilton hotel.
The focal attraction at West Central will be the new Odeon which will feature ten fully digital screens and nearly 2,000 seats, offering guests the latest blockbusters and alternative content.
Restaurant operators already confirmed include Nando’s, Ask Italian, Chiquitos, Coast to Coast, Frankie & Benny’s, Prezzo and TGI Fridays, and negotiations with several others are taking place.
Dymond says: “Securing Legal & General Property as our funding partner underlines the quality of West Central as only the very best leisure assets in the country meet its purchase criteria. LGP is one of the largest investors in this sector and the perfect partner for us as they have an established relationship with the Council and are keen to help develop Bournemouth’s position as the leading destination on the south coast.”
Andrew Ferguson, head of leisure at Legal & General Property, says: “With an exceptionally strong tenant line-up and centre of town position, we believe this scheme offers an attractive investment opportunity and forms a very important part of Bournemouth’s wider regeneration.”