Wirral Council recently purchased two shopping centres in Birkenhead with the support of national law firm Bevan Brittan.
The strategic acquisitions are part of the local authority’s ambitious regeneration plans for the area.
Wirral Council bought the freehold for Birkenhead shopping centres – The Pyramids and The Grange, in a deal which was completed in a matter of weeks.
The two shopping centres sit on a freehold 12.9 acre site in the heart of Birkenhead Town Centre with tenants including high street retailers Boots, Next and River Island.
Wirral Council views the acquisition as an important part of its regeneration plans for the town. The Birkenhead 2040 Framework sets out the Council’s framework for a 20-year redevelopment project.
The proposals, which aim to reconnect the revitalised town centre with opportunities along the Mersey Waterfront, include the creation of family-friendly neighbourhoods with green public spaces and parks.
Bevan Brittan partner David Hobbs led the team that advised Wirral Council on the acquisition. He said, “The timescales involved were very tight, and we had to pull out the stops to complete everything in time.
“With 160 retail units across both shopping centres, the due diligence and production of lease reports alone was a significant task. However, the team really pulled together to deliver for our client. We look forward to continuing to work with Wirral Council on the management of the shopping centres with legal support around leases and other property matters.”
Chair of Wirral Council’s Committee for Economy, Regeneration and Housing, Cllr Tony Jones, said, “Purchase of the Grange and Pyramids shopping centre sites in the town centre was a significant investment for the local authority at a key point as we press ahead with our ambitious regeneration plans.
“It was imperative that the council moved quickly to meet the previous owner’s tight timescales and Bevan Brittan were very responsive to our client brief and helped the council demonstrate that it was serious about completing the deal.
“The town centre is a crucial component of our broader plans for Birkenhead and the Left Bank of the Wirral which stretches from Bromborough through Wirral Waters and Seacombe, Liscard and on to New Brighton, an amazing place to live, work and visit.”
A team of six lawyers from Bevan Brittan worked on this deal. David Hobbs was supported by commercial property experts Megan Asquith and Isabella Yaxley, and Bethan Lloyd provided advice on procurement and subsidy control. Bevan Brittan’s experts in intellectual property, construction, commercial and employment law completed the team.
Image: David Hobbs and the Pyramids shopping centre