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Jobs served on a plate

by Marco Cillario Fri 16 December 2016, 3:23 pm

The last vacant restaurant unit in a recently extended shopping centre has been let, bringing jobs to Orpington.

After a £1 million fit out, Nando’s opened on 7 December at The Walnuts Shopping Centre, creating 25 jobs. 

The 94-seat Afro-Portuguese restaurant is part of the new Crown House development, an 18,730sq m extension of The Walnuts through the demolition of a former job centre.

Planning permission to almost double the size of the previously 19,000sq m centre was granted in 2012. Building work by Miller Construction started in July 2014 and was completed in February 2016.

In March, a new cinema opened on site, the first such facility to be brought to the town in 34 years.

A second phase of the development was granted planning permission in November 2014. It included a 63-bedroom hotel operated by Premier Inn, which opened at the beginning of August.

Along with Nando’s, restaurants Bella Italia, Cream and Dean’s Diner opened on site over the past year, as well as a B&M Bargains store, Yours Clothing and Pure Gym.

Rockspring Property Investment Managers, owner of the site, has also undertaken the refurbishment of the common parts and entrances to the shopping centre.

Also, Bromley Council is implementing an investment programme to improve the public realm and the market square in front of The Walnuts.

“Nando’s is an important letting for the Walnuts and is testament to both the strength of the shopping centre’s location and the new leisure offering,” said Shaun Hose, asset manager at Rockspring.

“We now have a cinema, gym and hotel, as well as restaurants and cafes, bringing both leisure and hotel elements to the shopping centre - therefore increasing visits and dwell time, which has seen our footfall grow dramatically as a result.”

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