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Garden centre retail


The best garden centres provide a distinctive destination and a unique retail experience.

Bristows’ garden centre team has extensive expertise advising clients operating in this vibrant sector and has been involved in a number of significant garden centre deals over the last 10 years.  These include the development of the ground-breaking Bicester Avenue Garden Centre.

We advise: 

  • owners, ranging from nationwide operators to family run businesses;
  • concession holders and retailers;
  • investors;
  • lenders

We have seen deals in this sector from every perspective and understand what makes garden centre projects different and special.

Our work includes:

  • Investment projects, including investment funds and joint ventures
  • Tax planning for disposals and acquisitions of garden centre businesses and land
  • Garden centre business acquisitions, disposals and re-structuring
  • Landlord and Tenant issues including green leases, concession leases and franchise arrangements
  • Development work, including the release of land for alternative uses
  • Advice for lenders and borrowers on the financing of garden centre projects
  • Employment advice including the impact of TUPE on business transfers
  • Advice relating to the protection and exploitation of intellectual property including garden centre and product brands
  • Advising on potential promotional and advertising issues

Recent experience includes:

  • The structuring and establishment of the sector-specific LaSalle Garden Centre Fund, a closed-ended vehicle launched in 2006
  • Investment by the fund in eight garden centres, five of which were leased back to operators and three of which were owned in a joint venture with Wyevale  and the subsequent sale of the fund’s assets to Blackrock in September 2015
  • Acting on all aspects of LaSalle Investment Management’s investment in the 26 acre Wyevale site in Bicester, Oxfordshire which opened in September 2007 – a 69,000 sq. ft garden centre with over 30,000 sq. ft of ancillary retail, including restaurant and catering facilities, indoor and outdoor concessions as well as national home and lifestyle retailers
  • Advising in relation to the acquisition of the Grosvenor and Chatsworth garden centre businesses located within the grounds of their prestigious country estates including the grant of new leases and a brand licence agreement
  • Acting for one of the UK’s largest garden centre operators on acquisitions of unique garden centre businesses to complement their nationwide portfolio
  • Acting on behalf of a family owned garden centre business in relation to the disposal of their business and subsequent re-development, refinancing and letting of the site
  • Acting on behalf of landlords in relation to the grant of concession leases to national retailers including negotiation of bespoke turnover rent and service charge provisions and planning advice
  • Providing advice to a garden centre operator on energy micro generation proposals
  • Advising garden centre operators on lease restructurings and redevelopment proposals
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