Co-op confirms that town shopping hub is for sale

THE CO-OPERATIVE Group has finally admitted that they plan to sell the Abbeygate Centre after years of speculation about the future of the complex.

It is understood the Co-operative group, which is owner of the town centre shopping mall, has been made an offer by another company to buy the centre after confirming they are looking to dispose of the building from their property list.

This will put an end to rumours that have circulated that the centre owners were eager to sell the Abbeygate as several units in the complex still remain empty.

A spokesman from the Co-operative Group confirmed: “We are looking to dispose of our free holding of the Abbeygate in Arbroath and it is currently under offer.”

In recent years, the centre has seen many changes with retailers such as Clark’s Shoes, Iceland, the Post Office and Ethel Austin pulling out of the complex.

However, there has also been an influx of new tenants including fashion retailer Peacocks, Poundland and Home Bargains, while the Co-op food store has moved to a much smaller unit.

But the spokesman added that regardless of the outcome of any sale of the Abbeygate, the Co-op supermarket will remain.

He said: “The Co-operative food store will remain open and continue to operate following the sale.”

A string of closures on the High Street and in the Abbeygate Centre last year, saw a group made up of councillors and local business people come together to try and bring the town centre back to life.

And one issue the group was keen to resolve was that of the uncertain future of the Abbeygate, which was described by Councillor Donald Morrison as “the hub of the town.”

But now it seems the centre will move into the hands of new owners soon and it is believed they are poised to bring a new retailer with them. It is thought that an electrical store could fill the unit left unoccupied following the departure of Clark’s Shoes and the Card Factory.