Priory Square Opens in Hastings as Latest Part of New Business District
Posted on June 29, 2009
Priory Square was opened on Friday 26 June in Hastings town centre at a hospitality event for businesses, the community and government officials.
The event to open the public space and new offices included music from three local bands plus locally produced food and drinks. It was attended by around 200 people, who also saw contemporary art works on display in the offices and, from the sixth floor balcony, panoramic views across the town to the ruins of the castle and the sea. The art works were from internationally-renowned local artists Malcolm Glover, Peter Waldron, Bea Lacey and Martin Everett and are on loan from the F-ISH gallery, based a few metres from the Square, under its Art In Business scheme.
The new public space lies between Havelock Road and Priory Street, in the centre of the rapidly emerging Priory Quarter business and education district (www.prioryquarter.com). It is bordered on one side by One Priory Square – 44,000 sq ft of high quality contemporary offices on six floors, completed earlier this month. On the other side is a new café/restaurant unit, now available to let, with outdoor seating in the Square. Adjacent is the five-storey Lacuna Place office development which was completed last autumn, with first tenants Bibby Financial Services and Tesco.
Priory Square, One Priory Square and Lacuna Place have been developed by Coastal Land LLP – a joint venture between economic development company Sea Space (www.seaspace.org.uk) and property specialists The Land Group (www.winro.co.uk). Further proposed elements of Priory Quarter include additional premises for University Centre Hastings at the rear of the existing Post Office, forming another side of Priory Square; a public library; a multi-screen cinema; plus additional offices and retail units.
John Shaw of Coastal Land comments: “It’s exciting to have seen the hoardings come down to reveal Priory Square – and to see people flooding into the new space for the opening event. With the One Priory Square offices complete as well, it’s another big milestone in the development of Hastings town centre as a quality business and education district.”
The creation of Priory Quarter is a core part of the ten-year economic investment programme for the Hastings area. A study last month found that Hastings offers companies significant cost benefits as a business location. It concluded that a typical 100-employee firm could save over £2M a year by operating from Priory Quarter instead of London’s West End, and almost £2M pa compared with the City. Companies can find out what they could save by visiting www.prioryquarter.co.uk/comparecosts.