NOTTS property firm BSP Holdings says its purchase of Equitable House overlooking Old Market Square is a “once in a lifetime opportunity” and it is now spending £1.2m on its refurbishment.
BSP bought the six-storey 24,000 sq ft building from Barclays Bank.
The property will now become office headquarters for BSP which aims to increase its property portfolio in the city.
Remaining vacant space will be offered out for leisure and commercial use.
Nottingham City Transport is to take space for £76,250 pa on the ground floor along with Bet Fred the bookmaker.
BSP, a co-directorship of six brothers – Stephen, Paul, David, Robert, Michael and Alan Singh, is in negotiations with a leisure operator which could take further space up to 17,000 sq ft within the landmark building.
BSP will take one full floor of the property for its 40-strong team, and an extensive office refurb programme has already begun, says Paul Singh who heads the company’s commercial arm.
“This was a once in a lifetime opportunity for us to take a landmark building in a location which could not be more central,” he said.
“We are delighted to have acquired Equitable House and have already started refurbishing the office accommodation.”
Equitable House dates back to the 1920s when it was purpose-built for the Woolwich Equitable Building Society.
It was designed by prominent Nottingham architect Thomas Cecil Howitt who helped create many city landmarks including the Council House opposite, and St Barnabas’ Church, Derby Road.
In the 1920s and ’30s, Howitt was housing architect for the city council, designing municipal housing estates which are often considered to be among the finest, in terms of planning, in the country.
BSP, which has been trading for 30 years, has business interests locally, nationally and overseas.
It has projects in South Yorkshire, Notts, Lincolnshire – as well as schemes in Spain and Italy.
The company is involved in commercial, industrial and residential developments and owns property and caravan parks all over the UK.
Paul Singh added: “It was important for us to move to NG1.
“We have been looking to relocate to the city centre for some time – but we never expected to move so close to the Market Square.”
Chris Sinclair, of Innes England advised BSP in the Equitable House deal and will be jointly marketing vacant space with Savills in 2009.
“BSP has the opportunity to creative some very attractive refurbished office accommodation in a fantastic location overlooking the Market Square,” he said.
“These opportunities don’t come to the market very often. It is a great opportunity for BSP.”
Peter Thornley, managing partner at Fraser Brown Solicitors which handled the acquisition, said: “This is yet another significant deal that we have had the pleasure of working with BSP.
“Equitable House is an important building in Nottingham and stands in an excellent location within the city.
“Its purchase shows that despite the current economic climate there are still deals to be done by those with the right entrepreneurial skills.”