Frenchgate Shopping Centre in Doncaster has received planning consent for a multiplex cinema and is currently in discussions with two well-known cinema brands.
Work on the £8 million investment will begin later this year, ahead of a spring 2020 opening.
The planning permission is part of an ongoing investment strategy by the centre’s owners, The Frenchgate Limited Partnership.
Occupying 15,000 sq ft and comprising up to eight screens, depending on configuration, the cinema will be complemented by a further proposed development of three new F&B operators totaling in excess of 6,000 sq ft. The cinema space will occupy the remaining part of the former BHS on North Mall, which is also home to a 30,000 sq ft Flip Out trampoline park. Frenchgate was the first shopping centre in the UK to achieve a change of use from retail to leisure for a former BHS. The proposed restaurants will be created within existing adjacent space.
The cinema and supporting food offer will be directly accessed from the mall of the existing busy centre, which has an annual footfall of 16 million. The new offer will join a strong line-up of retail and leisure brands, with Flip Out, Lovisa and one of the first Taco Bells in the UK all opening at Frenchgate in the last 12 months. In addition, Dunkin’ Donuts and Ramsden’s will open in the coming weeks, and Greggs is due to upsize on ‘Eat Street’ at Frenchgate, which has fast become Doncaster’s number one grab-and-go destination.
Commenting on the news on behalf of The Frenchgate Limited Partnership, Paul Devlin said: “The new cinema will be an exciting addition to Frenchgate, expanding on our adventurous leisure offer and evolving a retail destination that reflects the changing needs of contemporary consumers. Situated in such a central location, we are the hub of the town, providing visitors from across the region with an experience for everyone to enjoy.”
Due to its position in the heart of Doncaster, Frenchgate Shopping Centre is a prime retail and leisure location with excellent transport connections providing easy access from a large regional catchment. The town has seen a raft of investment in the last 12 months, including improved road links to Doncaster Sheffield Airport and the opening of Amazon’s new £100 million iPort logistics facility, the brand’s third fulfilment centre in the town.
Time Retail and Rawstron Johnson act for Frenchgate. The planning consent was secured by Pegasus Group.