PPR Estates acquires £50m+ town centre regeneration sites so far in 2021

September 2021

PPR acquisitions for town centre regeneration: 2021 year to date.

Between January and August 2021, PPR Estates (PPR) have acquired 8 separate sites with £50m+ combined Gross Development Value (GDV). These town centre regeneration sites are located across Southern England and all fit within our sustainable, mixed-use, urban regeneration investment strategy.

These acquisition projects include:

  • Re-purposing underused ancillary retail and office space to create residential units alongside smaller viable retail/ commercial units (Chichester, Stratford-Upon-Avon, Lewisham).
  • Converting a disused office into residential apartments and sustainably preserving a Grade II Listed building (Tunbridge Wells).
  • Redeveloping a redundant care home into a new nursery for 90 children and residential apartments (Bromley)
  • Creating Mews Houses, apartments with amenity space and smaller, sustainable retail units (Oxted).
  • Creating much needed housing with private & desirable amenity space in redundant, urban industrial sites (Tunbridge Wells, Edmonton).

Jon Caplan, PPR’s Managing Director, comments: “The internet and Covid-19, along with increasing Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) concerns are all changing the way we live. Town centre property needs to respond to these changes. We are excited to be one of only a few firms with the vision, funds and expertise to be actively investing in the urban regeneration of our towns and high streets currently.”

PPR are seeking more opportunities to sustainably repurpose town centre buildings to create thriving mixed-use residential, retail / leisure and commercial locations that have personality and most importantly – where people want to spend time in future.


Covid-19 has accelerated the trends affecting our town centres and high streets.

The Work From Home (WFH) revolution, initially dictated by Government mandate because of Covid-19, has massively changed how our town centres are used. Numerous household retail brands such as Topshop and Debenhams have collapsed during the pandemic as internet shopping took ever more market share, changing the face of many high streets forever.

The economic devastation of many of England’s town centres and high streets, driven by the internet but accelerated by Covid-19 is a major challenge for town planners, land owners and businesses at both a national and local level. High Streets and town centres can no longer simply rely on identikit retail brands and boring, often substandard, offices for a viable future. To have a sustainable future, they need to be flexible and future proof spaces with personality that give people multiple reasons to spend time there.

WFH and internet / home delivery trends have created town centre winners and losers in the short term with some of the most “Prime” locations badly hit by reduced footfall, spend and a potentially bleak future. More local / neighbourhood centres with a variety of offering have fared better over the last year but even they are facing increasing commercial voids in many instances; as the spaces available are not fit for purpose.

Consequentially, town centre building uses and land values are going through a revolutionary re-set. Despite the short term demand for extra personal amenity space, Working from home will diminish in importance as life opens up post Covid-19. The social and economic draw of big cities will return – the thousand year plus trend towards urban living is unlikely to be permanently reversed by Covid-19. However, the ESG requirements and demands of tomorrow’s society need addressing at both an individual town centre / high street and specific asset level to ensure future value and demand remain. PPR see this as where we can add value.


BIG Data and APPG for Regeneration and Development

PPR use Big Data analytics techniques to inform our acquisition and investment strategies. We regularly analyse all 3,000 of England’s town centres and high streets for land value resilience across over two million data points that cover eleven discreet data themes to inform our plans.

Working with the Data Science and Planning experts at Urban Intelligence we use the latest information from a variety of quantitative and qualitative sources to analyse and prioritize the vast number of town centre regeneration opportunities currently available. Our proprietary model includes such factors as work-from-home propensity, geospatial and geographic density analysis, commercial vacancy rates, population growth trends, town centre attractiveness, economic indicators and housing demand / price trends by town centre and catchment.

As a member of the Advisory Board to the All-Party Parliamentary Planning Group (APPG) for Regeneration & Development, PPR are sharing our practical experiences and some of our Big Data driven strategic insights with central government. We believe that increased communication, understanding and trust between politicians and the commercial property sector is fundamental to achieving the regeneration that many of our town centres desperately need. PPR are keen to play our part in this collective challenge for society.


Our regeneration mission

PPR Estates is committed to help revitalise and regenerate town centres and our latest investments are a vote of confidence in these locations.

PPR have considerable further funds to invest in similar site acquisitions this year and beyond. Our strategic aim is to repurpose vacant and under-utilised properties to create thriving mixed-use residential, retail and commercial units, generating value and transforming English town centres through hands on asset management and redevelopment. At the simplest level, by creating flexible spaces where people want to spend time, we will create sustainable value.


Keep an eye on our LinkedIn channel for updates on our latest development projects and acquisitions.