Watling instructed to market Lambert’s Yard – prime mix-use investment in central Leeds

A prime Leeds city centre mixed use development has been put up for sale by Watling Real Estate.

Lambert’s Yard, at 162-165 Lower Briggate in Leeds city centre, is a recently developed investment opportunity incorporating 19 self-contained apartments and three prominent retail units.

Watling is instructed to sell the freehold and long leasehold interests in the property, which is currently 97% occupied and generates a gross income of approximately £470,000 per annum, with residential units producing £347,000, and commercial accommodation £123,000.

Rob Cruikshank, associate director in Watling’s Leeds office, said: “Lambert’s Yard brings a unique approach to providing residential accommodation in the Leeds market. The scheme offers high quality accommodation around a private courtyard area that benefits from being at the heart of Leeds City Centre.

“There is a growing movement for the development of residential schemes within the retail & leisure core of Leeds City Centre. The property’s occupancy rate speaks for itself, and there is clearly strong demand in the market for residential schemes in this locale.

“At present, we are seeking expressions of interest for the property and expect a strong level of interest, given the quality and positioning of the scheme. We believe it will be of interest to local, regional and national investors alike.”

The centrepiece of the scheme – Lambert’s House – has been developed around a Grade II Listed building that is widely regarded as being one of the oldest buildings in Leeds city centre.

The 19 apartments on the scheme have retained many of the original features of the building such as exposed brickwork and wood beams thought to date from the 17th century. Access to the residential area is via a secure gated entrance on Lower Briggate, leading into a central courtyard area.

The development includes a communal residents’ lounge and co-working space, and at the rear of the courtyard are communal rooms used as a post room and cycle storage area.

More details are available at https://watling.com/property/223031/ or by contacting rob.cruikshank@watling.com, james.bunce@watling.com or ian.whittaker@watling.com


For further information, please contact:

Rob Cruikshank, Associate Director, Watling Real Estate, One The Embankment, Neville Street, Leeds, LS1 4DW


Issued by ASAP PR – 07990 978257

Editors’ Notes

Watling Real Estate was created on 1 June 2023 by a management buyout of the real estate restructuring division of Avison Young. The business is headquartered in London with a network of offices in Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Bristol, providing national coverage with the benefit of local and regional expertise.  It has a team of 20+ professionals offering a multi-disciplinary real estate advisory business and will immediately become one of the UK’s largest real estate restructuring consultancies.

The team, originally part of the GVA business and more recently Avison Young post-merger in 2019, is one of the most highly regarded and experienced real estate advisors operating within the restructuring and recovery marketplace. Over the past decade, the team has advised or transacted on real estate with a total value of over £11 billion, having worked on some of the most significant real estate restructuring projects in the UK.

Watling Real Estate is backed by Bassi Capital, a private family office with extensive core investments in the real estate sector including publicly listed companies, private limited companies, and joint partnerships. https://bassicapital.com/

Minister for Manufacturing needed as nine in ten firms unhappy with government support for sector

Audit, tax, advisory and risk firm Crowe has provided a snapshot of the UK manufacturing market with the results of its Manufacturing Outlook Report 2024, examining how the UK government can best support the sector.

Johnathan Dudley, partner and Head of Manufacturing at Crowe, said: “With over half the world’s population voting for future governments this year, the manufacturing sector’s attention has been focussed on areas that can be directly influenced and transformed with the right policy support and intervention.”

During a period of high inflation, political changes, and continued strained supply chains, Crowe’s analysis – conducted in partnership with the Confederation of British Metalforming (CBM) – looks at the key issues impacting manufacturers. Read the full report here.

Key findings from nearly 90 respondents, include:

  • A vast majority – 87% – of manufacturers are unhappy with the government support currently provided to the sector
  • 45% view current global turbulence and economic conditions as barriers to growth
  • Nearly 7 in 10 manufacturers expecting a growth in sales this year
  • 70% invested in carbon neutral initiatives last year, a third increase on 2023
  • 70% have increased wages for workers in line with inflation
  • 71% believe that industry 4.0 technology will have a significant effect on the sector
  • Only 5% of respondents cite energy as a barrier to growth, down a fifth on 2023

Crowe’s analysis shows that the effect of global conditions, including geopolitical tension and conflict, global and national inflationary pressures, and political turbulence, are having an increasing impact on the sector. It’s fair to aggregate these concerns with the Brexit and trading tariff results, with more than half of respondents stating they have a significant concern around supply chain uncertainty.

However, even with these considerations, there is evidently a spirit of business flexibility and “knuckling down” in the face of global and national political issues, with 68% of respondents to the survey expecting turnover to grow over the next year – a testament to the resilience of the sector.

Barriers to growth

The demand for investment and willingness to invest in manufacturing were significant considerations for respondents.

The survey results show that use of own cash resources has predominantly funded businesses this year, correlating to what has been seen in the market with limited short-term demand for capital investment finance.

Mr Dudley said: “There is a clear reluctance to invest and borrow, and with funding from the government reducing as COVID-19 loans start to pay down, there is a real need for government intervention.”

“Reshoring and near shoring should be back on the agenda, as access to raw materials, expertise, and the necessary funding to capitalise on the opportunities at hand are essential.

“For example, at present, the UK is incredibly efficient at recycling steel scrap, but only 25% of it is processed and retained in the UK for supply, while the rest is exported. Local sourcing and greater control of supply chains is clearly necessary.

2024 Outlook

Interestingly, there has been a reduction in concerns over energy costs (only 5% of respondents cite it as a worry), largely due to increased investment in decarbonisation, with 70% of respondents investing in carbon neutral initiatives, in tandem with falling prices compared to the year before.

What is encouraging is the UK’s status as a world leader in renewable energy production and the growing investment in decarbonisation. However, this is only possible through government funding into new technologies in manufacturing, aerospace and automotive. Strategic allocation of this investment into UK manufacturing is crucial.

There is evidently also an increasing realisation that digitisation is the way forward, with more respondents than 70% – an increase of nearly 20% on 2023 – of respondents believing that new technology will replace traditional manufacturing methods.

Mr Dudley added: “Large numbers have been thrown around by politicians in terms of support for manufacturers, but the proof will be whether this is actually spent on what the sector needs, as evidenced in this report.

“Businesses in this sector face many challenges, from financing to recruitment, but a looming election offers some hope. I’d like to see greater support for UK businesses, and a reduction of regulatory barriers for manufacturers in recognition of the vital role they play in the UK economy.

“The UK has a rich history in manufacturing. For this to continue, it is high time that a dedicated Minister for Manufacturing was established to unlock the sector’s potential and allow the UK to revive its position as a global manufacturing hub.

“Determining a long-term strategy, a Minister for Manufacturing can light the fuse of a new industrial revolution in the UK by aligning innovation, economic development, education and support nearly a million green jobs to help get this country making, building and adding value again.”

Stephen Morley, CBM president, said: “Manufacturing should be a priority for this UK government and the next. The challenges of 2024 present a great opportunity for the sector, with the UK government prioritising economic growth to pay the bills.

“The scene is set for manufacturing to drive UK growth and play a larger part in the UK economy’s GDP. We need significant investment and government support, focussing on an Industrial Strategy including a Minister for Manufacturing.”


Notes to Editors:

About us

Crowe is a national audit, tax, advisory and risk firm offering global reach and local expertise. We are an independent member of Crowe Global, one of the top 10 accounting networks in the world. With exceptional knowledge of the business environment, our professionals share one commitment, to deliver excellence.

We are trusted by thousands of clients for our specialist advice, our ability to make smart decisions and our readiness to provide lasting value. Our broad technical expertise and deep market knowledge means we are well placed to offer insight and pragmatic advice to all the organisations and individuals with whom we work. Close working relationships are at the heart of our effective service delivery.

For more information, visit: www.crowe.co.uk

Crowe industry recognition

  • Top charity auditor for 15 consecutive years (Charity Finance Audit Survey, 2009 – 2023)
  • Risk Consultancy of the Year 2023 for the fourth consecutive year (InsuranceERM)
  • UK Member of one of the top 10 accounting networks in the world (International Accounting Bulletin World Survey 2022)
  • Awarded Silver in the 2022 Citywealth Brand Management and Reputation awards – Best Overall Marketing Campaign category for Your Life Builder
  • Awarded Silver in the 2022 Citywealth Magic Circle awards
  • Ranked 3rd in the AIM auditors ranking by number of audits (AIM Advisers Rankings Guide, July 2023)
  • 9th largest audit firm in the UK (UK fee income of audit firms that audit PIEs – by fee income on audit, FRC Key Facts and Trends in the Accountancy Profession, Figure 33, August 2023)

Crowe appoints Helen Blundell as partner in Social Purpose and Non-Profit team

National audit, tax, advisory and risk firm Crowe has appointed Helen Blundell as a partner in the firm’s Social Purpose and Non-Profit team.

She joins the partnership with more than 20 years of experience and the ICAEW Diploma in Charity Accounting (DChA). She works closely with a diverse range of clients from local charities to organisations operating nationally and internationally.

Having joined Crowe in 2023 as a Director RI (Responsible Individual), Helen’s experience spans audits, independent examinations, and advisory.

Based at Crowe’s Midlands and South West offices in Oldbury and Cheltenham, her advisory work has included governance reviews, corporate structures, and registration support across a range of sub-sectors, including faith-based groups, heritage charities, health and welfare, education, and art organisations.

Crowe’s commitment to its Social Purpose and Non Profits team is central to the firm’s growth strategy. In December 2023, Crowe was named top charity auditor for the 15th successive year in Civil Society’s Charity Finance Audit Survey. Helen’s appointment further demonstrates Crowe’s long-standing dedication to the sector.

Helen Blundell said: “I am passionate about working with clients in the social purpose and non-profit sector and consider it a privilege to be part of a market-leading firm which is equally committed to serving the needs of this sector. I am looking forward to working with my colleagues to continue to deliver lasting value to our clients, providing assurance and allowing them to focus on delivering their objectives.”

Ross Prince, Office Managing Partner at Crowe’s Midlands and South West offices, added: “Helen’s knowledge, experience, and passion for the sector has long been held in the highest esteem at Crowe, making her an important advocate in sharing our values and expertise within the charity sector.

“Her promotion is a testament to our commitment to crafting talented teams who can bring insight and pragmatic advice to our clients. Congratulations and welcome to the partnership, Helen.”

Nigel Bostock, Chief Executive at Crowe, said: “As the cost-of-living crisis continues to impact donations and government funding, and charities are expected to deliver more for less in an increasingly regulated sector, Helen’s expertise supporting these organisations has never been more valuable.

“Her extensive expertise and experience will ensure that our team is fully equipped to continue offering exceptional advice and service to our clients when they need us the most. Congratulations, Helen.”


One of the UK’s most enviable property contracts won by Principle Estate Management

Principle Estate Management has won one of UK’s most enviable property contracts to help look after more than 4,000 homes on the prestigious Calthorpe Estate in Birmingham.

The new contract will increase Principle’s portfolio by more than 30% to over 16,000 units and will see the company take on three extra staff.

Principle has formed a self-contained unit headed by one of its existing associate directors within the business to manage the contract.

Family owned since 1717, the Calthorpe Estate covers a 640-hectare area which stretches through Edgbaston, into Harborne and Quinton.

Principle’s new contract includes the management of 1,063 long leasehold homes.

There are also 103 rented homes, from six-bedroomed, listed and detached houses to modern build-to-rent blocks of flats, plus more than 3,000 properties falling under Calthorpe Estates’ Scheme of Management contracts.

Brett Williams, joint managing director at Principle, said: “We are thrilled to have won this appointment to manage one of the UK’s most prestigious estates.

“Back in the 18th century, there were large houses on tree-lined roads with horses stabled in coach houses, and large landscaped gardens next to fields and orchards.

“The careful stewardship of the Calthorpe Estate over the last 300 years means the area has retained the remarkable charm of earlier days.

“It is now one of Birmingham’s most desirable areas to live, with an attractive mix of old and new, with modern houses and apartments often standing next to large Victorian and Georgian properties.

“This garden suburb is only minutes from the centre of Birmingham and is an enormous asset to the city, which everyone at Principle is proud to be helping to look after for future generations.”

Joe Jobson, also joint managing director at Principle, said: “One of Principle’s main jobs will be overseeing and, when necessary, enforcing the Scheme of Management, established by an Act of Parliament for the wider benefit of all residents.

“It ensures residents abide by everything from not putting washing out on Sundays to making sure their homes are properly maintained and decorated.

“There are carefully planned restrictions on issues like management of trees and building maintenance, plus any alterations must be submitted for approval, which helps maintain Calthorpe Estate as a special place to live.”

As part of the new contract, Principle will take on three experienced staff who used to work for the previous managing agent.

This includes chartered surveyor Steve Richards, who has dealt with the Scheme of Management for 25 years, along with a property inspector and property assistant.

Lauren O’Brien, a lettings manager at Principle, will join the self-contained team, which will be overseen by Andrew Winstanley, a senior associate director at the company.

Mr Winstanley has 25 years’ experience in residential property management. He is an Associate of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, and a Member of the Institute of Residential Property Management.

He said: “I am relishing the opportunity to lead on property management across the Calthorpe Estate.”

Haydn Cooper, chief executive of Calthorpe Estates, said: “We had a competitive and stringent tendering process to find the right residential property manager.

“We were impressed with the approach Principle demonstrated, which aligns well with our company ethos, and we are looking forward to partnering with them to deliver excellence in this area.”

Richard Suart, property director at Calthorpe Estates, added: “Principle impressed us with their attitude, reputation, experience and attention to detail and we are now looking forward to working closely with them to maintain the magic of the Calthorpe Estate.”

Ends (584 words)

For further information please contact:

Alanis Griffin

Principle Estate Management LLP, 137 Newhall Street, Birmingham B3 1SF

Tel: 0121 289 4315

Email: AGriffin@PrincipleEstate.co.uk



Editors’ notes: 

Principle Estate Management

Operating from offices in Birmingham and central London, Principle is a forward-thinking, people-focused managing agent providing professional property management services nationwide. Founded in 2018 and led by experienced Chartered Surveyors, Principle’s vision is to positively impact the everyday lives of its communities. The company manages modern apartment buildings, traditional blocks of flats, mixed use developments, private housing estates and private rented sector (PRS) or build-to-rent (BTR) developments, as well as portfolios of rented properties for residential or commercial landlords.

Beechnut House – perfect for all the family and today’s busy working lifestyle

Hidden away behind private gates, it is one of Solihull’s best kept secrets – the exclusive six bedroom Beechnut House – and it is now on the market with leading agents DM & Co. Homes.

It is the perfect property for the modern family, offering extensive accommodation teamed with space for further family members, old and young, and ideal for the WFH generation.

Tucked away in its own grounds in the heart of Solihull, it has four bedrooms in Beechnut House, and two self-contained annexes with two further bedrooms, offering versatile living space over a total of 3,800 sq ft.

Kathy Griffiths, Head of Premium at DM & Co. Homes, said: “Beechnut House is the perfect all-round family home for modern living

“First impressions are of a charming façade leading into a meticulously maintained interior, but it is the flexibility of the accommodation Beechnut House offers that is so attractive in today’s market.”

Step inside Beechnut House and you find a harmonious blend of classic elegance and modern comfort.

The inviting entrance hall, adorned with attractive quarry tiles, sets the tone and ambiance of this delightful fusion of classic and contemporary design elements.

The spacious kitchen is the beating heart of this family home, and comes complete with Aga and large island, leading into the dining area, while the oak framed orangery provides a serene retreat.

Proceeding up the oak staircase, the principal bedroom has bespoke wardrobes and a luxurious en-suite bathroom, with three additional, spacious bedrooms with fitted wardrobes and a family bathroom.

Outside, the secure gated entrance leads to generous parking and manicured gardens.

But it is the two self-contained annexes that mark Beechnut House out as special for the buyer who is looking for one property that is both ideal for the extended family and also has potential business use.

The first annex, The Sty, runs across the triple garage and has a covered, roofed walkway from the main house. It has open plan living space with an en-suite wet room, large storage cupboard and additional wardrobe space.

The Pavilion is the second annex, and it sits at the top of the drive with its own parking space, offering self-contained living with a large bedroom and luxury en-suite wet room with kitchen/living room.

Kathy added: “This would work wonderfully as a base for a home business Airbnb or would be perfect for elderly parents or adult offspring still living at home. Situated in a prime Solihull location, this property offers the perfect balance between peaceful residential living and convenient access to urban amenities.”

The proximity to Solihull Town Centre and the train station means dining, shopping, and transport options are just a short walk away, making this an ideal setting for those seeking a blend of comfort and convenience.

The M42 and M40 motorways provide fast commuter links to the M1, M5 and M6. Birmingham International Airport and Railway Station (giving access to Birmingham Moor Street in 9 minutes) are also just a short drive away.

Beechnut House is available for offers over £1.6 million. More details here or call 01564 777 314 Option 4 or email premium@dmandcohomes.co.uk to arrange a viewing.


For further information, please contact: 

Kathy Griffiths, Head of Premium, DM & Co. Homes

T: 01564 777 314 E: kathy.griffiths@dmandcohomes.co.uk

Unit 2, Forest Court Shopping Centre, Dorridge, Solihull, B93 8FG


Editors’ notes:

DM & Co. Homes is a local, independent estate agent covering Solihull, Dorridge, Lapworth, Tanworth-in-Arden and the surrounding areas.

The company has traditional high street offices at The Forest Shopping Centre, Station Road in Dorridge and at The Pavilions, Cranmore Drive in Solihull, along with a recently launched Land and New Homes division that is quickly growing.

It has made a major investment in its head office, based on Cranmore Drive, where its land & new homes, lettings, financial advisors, sales progressors and administration teams are based.

DM & Co. Home’s media team also operates from the Cranmore Drive offices, providing photography, video and content planning that attracts more than 100,000 views a month via YouTube, Facebook and Instagram.

Crowe names Ross Prince as new Office Managing Partner in Midlands and South West

Ross Prince has been named as the new Office Managing Partner for national audit, tax, advisory and risk firm Crowe in the Midlands and South West. 

He takes over the role from Johnathan Dudley, Crowe’s National Head of Manufacturing.

He will lead a team of over 300 including 19 partners in the firm’s Oldbury, Cheltenham and Bristol offices.

Ross Prince joined Crowe as a graduate in 2002 and was appointed a Partner in 2014, after graduating from Bath University with a Master of Engineering focused on Materials Science and Engeering. He was educated a Bewdley High School & Sixth Form and lives in Worcester.

He has worked with professional practices, owner-managed businesses and international groups for the last 22 years, helping business owners and leaders to grow their businesses and manage risk. He is also a former Chair of the Worcestershire Group of Chartered Accountants.

He said: “Johnathan is one of the best known business figures in the Midlands and South West and it is a huge privilege to have been chosen to step up into the Office Managing Partner role after he has led us for over 30 years.

“I’m privileged to be working with a team of people who are interesting, insightful and good to spend time with. They have good ideas, care about doing the right thing and helping people – whether that is our clients, our communities or each other.

“We have some exciting things planned for the future, but it will also be ‘business-as-usual’ as the firm is already in a good place right now.”

Johnathan Dudley said: “Ross is a home-grown talent, having trained and qualified as a Chartered Accountant with the firm. 

It has been an honour and a pleasure to lead an office of this firm for over 30 years. I have done this while holding down several other roles in the firm including time both on the supervisory board and the executive.

“These and other roles gave me clear experience of the necessity to get management succession right. Not only is this key to the success of our firm but it’s also important to the individuals involved too. With that in mind, some two years ago, I started to plan for my own succession as office managing partner of MSW and sought out the support of the Executive in this regard.”

He added: “That said, I’m not quite ready to be put out to pasture yet!. The appointment of Ross will free me up to further develop my work with the SME corporate sector and manufacturing businesses of all sizes on behalf of the firm as well as to develop connections for the benefit of the firm in the future.”

Nigel Bostock, Chief Executive of Crowe, said: “Johnathan Dudley has done an outstanding job as Office Managing Partner in the Midlands and South West for over 30 years and will continue to lead our SME Corporate Business practice as well as our sector-leading Manufacturing group.

“Ross Prince is Crowe through and through, having joined us as a graduate and worked his way up to be appointed Office Managing Partner.“Crowe has an open door for talented individuals but it is gratifying to see how we develop our in-house talent and Ross is proof positive that the sky is the limit at Crowe.

“He has worked hard and earned the respect of both his clients and his colleagues and is the natural choice to continue the excellent work of Johnathan Dudley over three decades.”


Bond Wolfe marketing substantial Derby leisure investment for £1.35 million

A huge property rented out to a gym at a Derby shopping park has gone up for sale with commercial property agency Bond Wolfe for £1.35 million.

The freehold retail investment opportunity is let to The Gym Group at Unit 5, Southgate Retail Park, just to the south of Derby city centre.

James Mattin, managing director of Bond Wolfe, explained that The Gym Group was currently paying £97,344 a year in rent for the property on a lease expiring in March 2031.

The 11,643 sq ft unit has a rent review in March 2026, when the rent is expected to increase.

Mr Mattin said: “We are marketing this property for offers based on £1.35m, which would equate to a net initial yield of 6.8%, after usual purchaser’s costs.

“Founded in 2008, The Gym Group is a great tenant that currently trades from 233 properties situated throughout the UK, with more than 600,000 members and each gym averaging 310,000 customer visits per annum.

“The Gym Group have been in Unit 5 since 2011 and their commitment to the venue was underlined back in 2020 when they signed a new lease that removed a break clause.”

Unit 5 is fitted out in The Gym Group’s usual style with a large free weights area, spacious functional training zones, plus open plan cardio and strength training areas.

The property is just a short stroll from Derby’s main railway station and city centre shops.

Southgate Retail Park itself is a modern shopping destination anchored by a Lidl supermarket, with a high volume of footfall and a 110-space car park.

The retail park is located off the A5250 Normanton Road with a nearby link to the city ring road.

For more details, see https://www.bondwolfe.com/agency/properties/#11408 , call James Mattin on 0121 525 0600 or email jmattin@bondwolfe.com.

Ends (298 words)

For further information, please contact:

James Mattin, Managing Director, Agency,

2nd Floor, 75/77 Colmore Row, Birmingham B3 2AP

0121 525 0600 or 0121 524 1172, Email: jmattin@bondwolfe.com


Issued by Andy Skinner, ASAP PR, mobile 07990 978257.

Editors’ notes

Bond Wolfe is an established commercial property practice based in Birmingham. Its services include commercial property sales and lettings, auctions, investment, development and property management throughout the UK.

Nicol & Co founder becomes podcast star alongside top US real estate coac

Leading Worcestershire estate agent Matt Nicol went more than the extra mile to improve his business when he travelled 4,240 miles to connect with one of America’s leading real estate gurus.

Mr Nicol, founder and managing director of Nicol & Co, was a guest at the Elite Retreat networking seminar in Orlando, Florida, run by Tom Ferry, one of the top real estate coaches in the USA.

And he was invited on to Tom’s YouTube podcast, along with veteran Florida real estate agent Kirk Kessel, to talk about the differences between the US and European property markets.

Mr Nicol, whose company has offices in Droitwich, Malvern and Worcester, said: “It was my second time attending the Elite Retreat, which gives a different perspective on things.

“It’s a great way to learn from the way US real estate operates and how it markets itself.

“It’s part of my continual effort to push my business on and take Nicol & Co to that next level, learning from some of the best in the industry to ensure our vendors and buyers are given a better chance of success.”

Mr Nicol added: “I really value the advice that Tom Ferry provides and work with one of his coaches, Sandra Hendrix, so it was a huge honour for me to be invited onto Tom’s podcast.”

Tom Ferry’s real estate coaches operate across the globe and in more than 20 US states.

More than half a million people are subscribed to his YouTube channel, where he invites guests to talk about the real estate market and how to make their businesses more successful.

Mr Nicol said: “One of the ideas I’ve previously brought home was the Big Worcestershire Garage Sale, a community event that attracted hundreds of people to hold garage sales at 45 streets across the county last summer.

“But it also provides inspiration to make us a better, more successful, business and to ensure we go the extra mile – or few thousand – to make sure we are continually evolving our approach to ensure we are providing the best for our clients.”

Explaining why he’d invited Mr Nicol onto his podcast, Tom Ferry said: “It is important to look at the UK market versus ours here in America.

“We were interested in how the markets are different but also how the industry works in the UK.”

Ends (391 words)

For further media information or interviews, please call:

Matt Nicol, Managing Director, Nicol & Co, 226 Worcester Road, Droitwich Spa, WR9 8AY

Tel: 01905 799072 

Notes to Editors

Established in 2009, Nicol & Co is an award-winning estate agency offering advice on sales, lettings, new homes and land purchase. The company combines the latest in digital media with traditional high street courtesy and service to provide the perfect blend of old and new technology.

Prepared and issued by ASAP PR – 07990 978257.

REI tops milestone of £50 million in dividends

Real Estate Investors (REI), the UK’s only Midlands-focused Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT), has reached a milestone with its 2023 results.

The Birmingham AIM-listed business has now paid and declared £50.6 million to shareholders since the commencement of its dividend policy in 2012, to include a final 2023 dividend of 0.625p.

During the year to 31 December 2023, REI completed sales totalling £17.97 million, with a further £1 million since the year end.

The company has continued its successful debt repayment programme of £17.1 million, with a further £2.7 million paid off since the year end, reducing total drawn down debt to £51.7 million.

REI, to 31 December 2023, had a portfolio of £145.5 million with a net gearing of 32.4%.

The results show underlying profits of £4.5 million but with a pre-tax loss of £9.4 million, which chief executive Paul Bassi said was due to market sentiment, yield shifts and portfolio valuation decline.

He said: “Despite a backdrop of negative market sentiment, higher interest rates and political instability, coupled with very low levels of property transactions, we have secured excellent sales, and reduced our debt significantly whilst paying a covered dividend.

“Having finalised and announced our strategic plan in January 2024, our priority is to continue disposing of assets and maximising returns to shareholders, within the three-year timeframe.”

Rent collection levels across the year remained robust with overall rent collection for 2023 of 99.82%, while revenue for the year was £11.5 million.

A major letting contracted to complete in April 2024 will improve existing occupancy to 85.91% and boost contracted rental income to £11.2 million per annum, subject to sales and other lease activity.

Mr Bassi added: “We have additional pipeline sales in legals, and healthy pipeline lettings of £803,107 gross per annum.

“We will continue to capitalise on ongoing demand for smaller lot sizes from private investors and special purchasers. We will be holding our larger assets for income until corporate and institutional buyers return to the market.

“In the meantime, the business is operationally robust, and we will continue intensively managing assets to maximise income and reduce vacancy levels.

“The company announced in January 2024 that due to the persistent and substantial discount between share price and NAV, it would be conducting a three-year strategic sale of portfolio assets, with receipts from disposals used to pay down debt and return cash to shareholders.

“We are committed to maximising shareholder returns, while remaining open to individual asset sales or a corporate transaction that is in the best interest of shareholders.

“In the meantime, we are focused on further sales and a full repayment of our debt, with the Board’s intention to continue paying a fully covered quarterly dividend.”

Ends (450 words)

For further information, please contact:

Paul Bassi, Chief Executive,

Real Estate Investors plc, 2nd Floor, 75/77 Colmore Row, Birmingham B3 2AP

0121 265 6406 or 0121 212 3446


Prepared and issued by Steve Dyson at ASAP – mobile 0781 8004575

About Real Estate Investors Plc

Real Estate Investors Plc is a publicly quoted, internally managed property investment company and REIT with a portfolio of mixed-use commercial property, managed by a highly-experienced property team with over 100 years of combined experience of operating in the Midlands property market across all sectors.

The Company’s strategy is to invest in well located, real estate assets in the established and proven markets across the Midlands, with income and capital growth potential, realisable through active portfolio management, refurbishment, change of use and lettings.  The portfolio has no material reliance on a single asset or occupier.

On 1st January 2015, the Company converted to a REIT.  Real Estate Investment Trusts are listed property investment companies or groups not liable to corporation tax on their rental income or capital gains from their qualifying activities.  The Company aims to deliver capital growth and income enhancement from its assets, supporting its dividend policy.  Further information on the Company can be found at www.reiplc.com.

Charm meets modern in Knowle five bed family home on market with DM & Co. Homes

A five bedroom home in Knowle provides chocolate box charm in a Grade II listed home that dates back to the 16th century yet is only a short walk from the ever-popular Knowle High Street.

Golden End Cottage, on sale with Solihull’s leading agents DM & Co. Homes, marries period character and modern conveniences with luxury twists, to give you the best of both worlds.

And this charming, detached family home in Kenilworth Road comes with a heated swimming pool in the immaculate gardens and a patio area for outdoor summer dining.

Kathy Griffiths, Head of Premium at DM & Co. Homes, said: “Golden End Cottage provides a perfect balance of history and convenience and is just a stone’s throw from Knowle High Street.

“There is a common misconception about Grade II listed properties that they can be hard to adapt and update.

“Most councils, in this case Solihull Council, are more than willing to advise and come out and chat through potential changes.  It’s not about making things difficult, it’s about preserving the history for future generations.  You almost need to see yourself as custodians of history, so investment and sympathetic updating benefits all.

“While the regulations for completing works to listed buildings are greater than for usual planning applications, they are there to ensure  that all works are sympathetic to the building and the land that surrounds them.”

And she pointed out: “Knowle is a wonderful location set on the edge of open countryside, yet it has great rail links to Birmingham and London Marylebone, with the nearby M42 and M40 enabling fast access to Birmingham, Coventry and the national motorway network.”

The village is also known for its wide range of independent shops and restaurants and is home to leading state school Arden Academy with access to a range of private education including Solihull School.

Entering Golden End Cottage via the hallway into the key reception rooms, the standout feature is the welcoming country kitchen and breakfast room – a real family hub.

Next to the kitchen is the drawing rooms with exposed beams and cosy fireplace, alongside a study.

A light-filled dining room for more formal meals overlooks the foregarden and there is also a family room with garden access and an upstairs spiral staircase. The ground floor is completed by a playroom, utility room and convenient shower room.

Access to the first floor is via either the traditional staircase or the spiral staircase originating in the family room.

On the first floor is the main bedroom suite with private ensuite shower room and four additional bedrooms, all with their own unique charm.

The second bedroom comes with an ensuite bathroom room while the third bedroom has a walk-in wardrobe cupboard, with a family bathroom servicing the remaining bathrooms.

Outside, Golden End Cottage has a generous driveway leading to a double garage with plenty of parking space.

The delightful outdoor area features a beautifully landscaped fore garden with herbaceous borders, shrub beds and specimen trees.

The private rear garden, laid mainly to lawn, has a variety of specimen trees, a neat patio area and the heated swimming pool.

Kathy added: “With 3,552 sq ft of space, this five bedroom home provides the perfect blend of old and new and will suit those seeking a real statement property that is handy for all a family’s needs.”

It is on the market for £1.15 million and you can see further details here or make an appointment to view by calling 01564 777314 or email premium@dmandcohomes.co.uk

Ends (552 words)

For further information, please contact:

Kathy Griffiths, Head of Premium, DM & Co. Homes

T: 01564 777 314 E: kathy.griffiths@dmandcohomes.co.uk

Unit 2, Forest Court Shopping Centre, Dorridge, Solihull, B93 8FG


Editors’ notes:

DM & Co. Homes is a local, independent estate agent covering Solihull, Dorridge, Lapworth, Tanworth-in-Arden and the surrounding areas.

The company has traditional high street offices at The Forest Shopping Centre, Station Road in Dorridge and at The Pavilions, Cranmore Drive in Solihull, along with a recently launched Land and New Homes division that is quickly growing.

It has made a major investment in its head office, based on Cranmore Drive, where its land & new homes, lettings, financial advisors, sales progressors and administration teams are based.

DM & Co. Home’s media team also operates from the Cranmore Drive offices, providing photography, video and content planning that attracts more than 100,000 views a month via YouTube, Facebook and Instagram.

Issued by ASAP PR – 07990 978257