Esh awarded £10m contract for Hexham Bunker retail development

The new retail development will be based on land formerly used as a nuclear bunker.

We are delighted to have been awarded the contract for Hexham Bunker and to be working in partnership with Union Property. The scheme has been long in the making and is a great addition to Esh’s portfolio, with over £80m of projects currently underway within our commercial build division.”

Gary Dobson, Divisional Director at Esh Construction

Esh’s commercial build division has secured a £10m contract to construct a 69-bedroom Travelodge, a Lidl retail outlet and a 250-space public car park at Hexham Bunker on behalf of Union Property Development (Hexham) Ltd. Based at the entrance to the Northumberland town, the development will include significant works to the existing highways infrastructure, improving access to the site and the safety of pedestrians.

The 5.5-acre site known as the ‘long-neglected bunker’ was purchased in October 2018 by Newcastle-based developer, Union Property, after being vacant for nearly 3 decades. Plans to open a new Lidl store and Travelodge hotel were given the go ahead by Northumberland County Council in late 2019 and include outline consent for a further two retail units.

Construction is set to commence in the coming weeks as infrastructure works will be undertaken on Alemouth Road and Station Road, including the formation of a new roundabout with a main access road into the development site. The four-storey Travelodge and 2,177m2 Lidl food store will include customer parking and all associated external works, while the separate public car park will be utilised by Northumberland County Council as a second public town car park.

Esh has been appointed as the design and build contractor to deliver the development, working in partnership with design team – FaulknerBrowns Architects, Portland Consulting Engineers and kyoob.

The development is predicted to bring 60 new permanent jobs to the area and an estimated £2.16m visitor spending to Hexham.

Gary Dobson, Divisional Director at Esh Construction, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded the contract for Hexham Bunker and to be working in partnership with Union Property. The scheme has been long in the making and is a great addition to Esh’s portfolio, with over £80m of projects currently underway within our commercial build division.”

Peter Carruthers, Consultant Project Director at Union Property, said: “We are delighted to receive the go-ahead from Northumberland County Council. We have worked closely with planning officers to design a scheme which will reflect the character of Hexham. This represents a very significant economic investment in the town and will bring a long-term vacant site back into use”. 

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