22 March 2021

Fosse Park development takes shape ahead of phased opening

The Crown Estate is preparing to welcome shoppers and visitors to its new and improved Fosse Park in Leicester, as its retail and leisure extension completes.

The expansion project, which has been underway since April 2019, will open to the public on 12th April, with brands opening in phases from this date, subject to the latest Government regulations. In advance of this, some of the brands will be opening for collection only, from 1 April, where it’s safe to do so and in line with Government guidance.

New images of Food Central and Fosse Park West have also been released, giving local shoppers a first look at the completed scheme.

Reflecting The Crown Estate’s commitment to sustainability, the extension to Fosse Park includes: 16 new electrical vehicle charging points; 172 cycle parking spaces; around 500 photovoltaic panels (the equivalent of powering 31 homes per year) which will power the new development’s external lighting with renewable energy; and 5,000sqm of planted areas, including green walls, hedgerows, trees, insect hotels and wildflower meadows. 

Public areas across Fosse Park has been designed to echo the former heritage of the site as a brewery and connect into the surrounding landscapes of the Soar Valley. They will provide spaces to meet friends and family, and enjoy the other offers that Fosse Park brings, such as the children’s play zone, the art trail, and seasonal activities and events.

The Crown Estate has worked closely with local groups in the area to shape some of the public spaces and ensure Fosse Park is relevant and unique. Art installations around the scheme will bring to life local people’s reflections of the culture, heritage and landscape of the local area. A trail of ‘Fosse Foxes’ is also being installed, which will celebrate the talents of local people and a tourism wall map will provide inspiration for visitors to explore the local area.

The scheme has been delivered in partnership with local contractors Bowmer + Kirkland, who helped build the original Fosse Park 30 years ago.  As part of the works, employment opportunities including 12 apprenticeships and 27 work placements for young people were created. Fosse Park supports over 2,000 jobs in the area and almost £2.5million of contracts were created with local suppliers – including Mellor Bromley, Premier Surfacing, System Fencing and W.B Simpson & Sons

Michael Bell, Senior Asset Manager at The Crown Estate, said: “I’m so pleased to announce the completion of our development at Fosse Park. The last year has been a challenging period for us all, but our team have worked hard to achieve our ambitions. I’m delighted that we’ve still been able to involve the local community in aspects of the design, by using virtual forums to bring those discussions together.

“Fosse Park has been a much loved destination in the Leicester area over the last 30 years, and everyone at Fosse Park looks forward to welcoming visitors, when it is safe to do so, to enjoy the enhanced destination.”

John Richardson, Strategic Director at Blaby District Council said: “We are delighted to see the opening date for the extension of Fosse Park getting closer. Both residents and shoppers have been eagerly awaiting this fantastic development, which will help to boost the local economy thanks to the creation of new jobs. We hope everyone intending to visit Fosse Park West follows the government guidelines and visits safely.

“Fosse Park is one of our most distinctive places for visitors to the local area, and we have been pleased to work with The Crown Estate and the Blaby Tourism Partnership through Fosse Park West to showcase the wide range of visitor attractions in the district of Blaby. This includes the exciting Tourism Information Wall, the unique Fosse Foxes sculpture trail as well as digital content on our new social media channels @visitblaby.”

Alberto Costa, Member of Parliament for South Leicestershire said: “I am really delighted to see the new extension at Fosse Park completed ahead of its phased opening in early course. Fosse Park is already the nation’s premier out-of-town shopping park, but this new, very welcome £168m investment will help increase footfall and bring new levels of economic benefits and employment to South Leicestershire and the wider region.

“The Crown Estate have worked exceptionally hard to ensure that local people gain from new job opportunities as well as apprenticeships and work placements for young people. The Fosse Park extension has been constructed with environmental sustainability and our local communities at the core, and I look forward to visiting the development as soon as it safe to do so and should like to wish all concerned the very best of luck ahead of the new site’s opening”.

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