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Bath

Bath punches above its weight

Jones Lang LaSalle reports on the Bath Bubble


 
21 February 2013-Jones Lang LaSalle reports on the Bath Bubble and the Southgate effect, Bath


Yet more big retailers have fallen foul of the challenging economic climate that continues to beset high streets all across the country yet the City of Bath continues to punch above its weight, according to leading property advisors Jones Lang LaSalle.

 

Research revealed at the company’s South West Market Review on Wednesday (February 20), entitled The Winning Edge, shows that Bath has one of the highest growth rate forecasts outside London and the South East.
 
A predicted growth rate of 13 per cent in 2013 and a number of emerging sectors and trends are encouraging a level of cautious optimism in the wider property industry and indicate that, for many reasons, Bath is protected by its own ‘bubble.’
 
John Mulholland, director, Jones Lang LaSalle, Bath office, commented: “The Bath economy has always behaved differently from other UK cities in times of recession. Its strength in the retail, leisure and education sectors means it has made itself comparatively resilient to the economic downturn. It continues to punch above its weight, ensuring that this relatively small city remains a genuine national and international destination.
 
“Despite the testing times of late, we’ve seen many positive signs of recovery; with every fall there has been an opportunity and we expect that 2013 will see the city continue to flourish.”
 
As retailers have left the high street, a door has opened for a new shop front to arrive. The former JJB will shortly reopen at TKMaxx, Shoon has made way for Jack Wills, the former Jane Norman now trades as Molton Brown and in Cheap Street the Early Learning Centre has recently re-opened as Bill’s Delicatessen.
 
Southgate has had a major impact on the city’s success. The improvements have created an immediate ‘sense of arrival’ enhancing the wider city appeal and pulling the business district of Bath in a southerly direction.
 
Bath remains a residential hot spot and development continues at pace with the first phase of Western Riverside nearing completion and the new apartments finished at Southgate and sold to investors worldwide.
 
Increased confidence in the housing market is further reflected in the extensive interest that has been generated through the marketing of the Ministry of Defence sites at Warminster Road, Ensleigh and Foxhill.
 
The office market is also making great strides to readdress the balance in terms of supply over demand with take up recorded at 100,000 sq ft in 2012 - a 20 per cent growth on 2011.
 
John Mulholland, added: “The office market had a surprisingly good year in 2012 with 40 deals recorded. The ‘Southgate effect’ has definitely played a part in this with a number of office occupiers choosing to expand or relocate in close proximity, including Novia Financial Services and Altran Praxis.”