Booths supermarket site in Lancashire sold for £9.1m to county pensions group.

A Fylde coast supermarket has been sold for £9.1m to an investor which runs county council pensions.

Tuesday, 19th May 2020, 3:15 pm

The Booths store in St Annes is now owned by Lancashire County Pension Fund after being bought on its behalf by Knight Frank Investment Management.

Avison Young was appointed to take responsibility of the property in late 2019, and subsequently to bring it to market in January 2020.

The appointment to sell the supermarket followed the collapse of the borrower’s group of companies into administration in October 2019, including Marcus Worthington Properties of Claughton-on-Brock.

The Booths supermarket building in St Annes

Marcus Worthington's residential arm was Hollinwood Homes was developing the Fox Hall Village estate in Blackpool where just 200 of the planned 410 homes had been built before the crash. It left homeowners with unfinished buildings and snags and Blackpool Council had to step in to rescue the project.

The modern store was opened in 2015 in Heyhouses Lane as part of the redevelopment of the former Department of Work and Pensions site where the Premium Bonds computer Ernie was housed.

John Styles of KFIM said: “We are delighted to have secured this resilient asset at an attractive price at what we see as an opportune time in the investment market.

"The 30-year lease with CPI linked reviews provides an attractive and stable income return, alongside the asset enhancement opportunities we have identified. We continue to seek investment opportunities within the county of Lancashire.”

The official opening of the St Annes Booths in 2015. Pictured are Simon Booth, Edwin Booth and Graham Booth.

Chris Walker, director, restructuring solutions at Avison Young, said: “Securing the sale of this property, despite the uncertain, challenging climate is testament to the calibre of the team involved, both at Avison Young and BCLP who provided legal support throughout."

Adam Wildig, director, investment at Avison Young, said: “There was strong interest in the property from both institutional and private investors. Despite the challenges that COVID-19 has presented, it was encouraging to see KFIM look at a long-let investment with good property fundamentals.

“This deal reflects a good return for KFIM as there are still 30 years remaining on the lease term with CPI linked rent reviews.”

A spokesman from Booths said: “There has been a change of landlord over the site that the Booths St Anne’s store occupies. The property will continue trade as a Booths store and will continue to serve the local community.”