24 April 2019
Hastings Borough Council has recently acquired Lacuna Place, a 40,000 sq ft office building with ground floor retail constructed in 2008, located in Havelock Road, Hastings town centre. The office accommodation is let to the Department for Work & Pensions until 2033 and the majority of the ground floor is let to Tesco Stores Ltd until 2024. SHW acted as the acquiring agent on behalf of Hastings Borough Council, and was already familiar with Lacuna Place being the current property manager and having previously sold the building to the vendor, University of Brighton.
The property was marketed on behalf of University of Brighton by Bray Fox Smith. The price paid of £9.4 million reflected a net initial yield of just over 6%.
Peter Chowney, leader of Hastings Borough Council said: “Purchasing this building will help to regenerate the town centre, as the council will let the units that have remained empty for a long time, creating additional jobs and improving that part of Havelock Road. But it also earns money for the council to replace lost government grants. Over the past three years, we've run a very successful commercial property acquisition programme, which has generated over a million pounds a year for the council in net additional income. Without that, cuts to council services would have been much deeper. But it's helped to preserve and create jobs too. It's a programme we'll be continuing.”
SHW Investment Partner Charles Bramly said: “This was an opportunity for the council to acquire long-term secure rental income, assisting with the funding of ongoing council services.”