Nottingham’s Imperial Tobacco site purchased by Henry Boot Developments

Hundreds of new jobs will be created following Henry Boot Developments’ purchase of the Imperial Tobacco site on Thane Road, Nottingham.

Part of the Henry Boot PLC Group of Companies, the national development company plans to redevelop the site following the end of cigarette manufacturing at the Horizon Factory in 2016 and its subsequent sale by Imperial’s parent company, Imperial Brands.

The well-known 48-acre landmark site has been home to Imperial Tobacco’s UK production and distribution facility since the late 1960’s. Following its purchase by Henry Boot Developments, Imperial Tobacco will remain in occupation on part of the site, with the remainder of the site being brought forward for redevelopment.

Henry Boot Developments is involved in several projects in the Midlands, with £600m worth of schemes being brought forward nationally over the next 24 months. Its current projects range from employment parks, such as Markham Vale at Junction29a on the M1 in Derbyshire, to retail park developments including its Belgrave Road scheme in Leicester.

The Thane Road acquisition is the company’s first project in Nottingham since its 2007 redevelopment of the former Co-op store on Upper Parliament Street. The 220,000 sq ft scheme, known as the Axis, is home to Alea Casino, various retail and leisure operators, The Driving Standards Agency, and includes penthouse apartments on its upper floor. Henry Boot won numerous awards for the scheme, including Best Commercial Development at the Nottingham Evening Post Property Awards, and Mixed Use Development of the Year at the Property Week Midlands Awards.

Following the Horizon factory purchase, the company expects to announce other significant developments in the Nottingham area in the near future.

Justin Sheldon, Regional Manager at Henry Boot Developments, said: “Nottingham’s Imperial Tobacco site provides a superb opportunity for Henry Boot Developments in our continued expansion within the Midlands. We’ve worked closely with Imperial Brands and their disposal agent, JLL Nottingham, to maximize value whilst maintaining Imperial’s retained operational requirements on the site.

"Given its size, the site is capable of providing significant opportunities for Nottingham businesses, whether for expansion or for companies moving into the city, and it has the potential to generate hundreds of new jobs. Its proximity to the recently upgraded A453, the City Centre, and improving links with the soon to be completed Beeston link road through the Boots site, makes this one of the best locations in the region. We will work closely with Nottingham City Council in bringing forward our proposals.”

Ian King, Imperial Tobacco’s Operations Director Western Europe, added: “We’re proud of our Nottingham heritage, and our decision to end our manufacturing operations at the Horizon site was made with a heavy heart.

“It’s important to look forward however, and we’re delighted to have reached an agreement with Henry Boot Developments that ensures we leave a legacy which will continue to bring significant economic benefits to the city.” 

As the news of the purchase emerges, Henry Boot Developments is already in discussions with a number of potential occupiers.

Imperial Brands was represented by JLL Nottingham and TLT Solicitors. Henry Boot was advised by Prew Lumley of Squires Patton Boggs.