Two firms move into Newport city centre

South Wales Argus: OPEN FOR BUSINESS: Newport mayor Cllr John Guy cuts the ribbon to open the new Leisuretime sales office OPEN FOR BUSINESS: Newport mayor Cllr John Guy cuts the ribbon to open the new Leisuretime sales office

TWO businesses are bucking the trend by moving into Newport city centre.

Dunbar Estate Agents Ltd has moved from Caerleon Road to Bailey Street while Leisuretime coach holiday operator has opened a newsales office in Llanarth Street.

Ceri Johnson, who runs the Cardiff-based firm which runs 2,000 coach trips around the UK and Europe each year, said it had a strong customer base in Newport since it started in 1996.

She said she had considered many other areas but came back to Newport every time.

Her son, George Johnson, 22, has now taken over the Newport arm of the business, which employs three full-time staff, and she said they had received nothing but positive feedback.

She said: “It’s a great place, there’s great potential here and lots of fabulous people.”

Darra O’Flaherty, of Dunbar, said the firm, which started in 2005, had faith in Newport city centre and he encouraged more people to share his way of thinking to boost its profile.

He said: “We think we have gone as far as we can being an out-of-town agent, and with Admiral set to move to Cambrian Centre and the new development (Friars Walk) we are hoping that it’s going to be a bit of a turnaround for the city centre.

“I am from Newport and I know it gets a lot of slating but I am proud to be from here.”

Recently we reported that a string of high street shops was deserting the city centre.

Marks and Spencer has relocated to Newport Retail Park, clothes store Internacionale closed on January 21, clothes store Suit U has left its unit, toy shop Total Toys has left and women’s fashion shop Pilot is running a closing-down sale.

Comments (16)

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1:21pm Wed 30 Jan 13

HurricaneShane says...

Llanarth Street is hardly central...
Llanarth Street is hardly central... HurricaneShane

1:30pm Wed 30 Jan 13

LL3W80 says...

So, one of the businesses bucking the trend is a travel company. Now the last time I checked, their business is in getting people away from wherever their store is located.... makes sense
So, one of the businesses bucking the trend is a travel company. Now the last time I checked, their business is in getting people away from wherever their store is located.... makes sense LL3W80

1:53pm Wed 30 Jan 13

Mr G Went says...

When I first read the title, I expected it would be Rentokil and Dynorod...

On a serious note though, the town (ahem City) Centre needs something to draw the people back and whilst any new business is a bonus to Newport, it still falls way short
When I first read the title, I expected it would be Rentokil and Dynorod... On a serious note though, the town (ahem City) Centre needs something to draw the people back and whilst any new business is a bonus to Newport, it still falls way short Mr G Went

2:01pm Wed 30 Jan 13

NewportMum says...

Good news - that could prove to be a shrewd move by Leisuretime too
Good news - that could prove to be a shrewd move by Leisuretime too NewportMum

7:57pm Wed 30 Jan 13

Magor says...

Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem.
Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem. Magor

8:14pm Wed 30 Jan 13

godobe says...

Magor wrote:
Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem.
Good idea! I can't for the life of me think why M&S would move to Spytty (the new town centre) and that nice new shop with all them shoppers.
[quote][p][bold]Magor[/bold] wrote: Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem.[/p][/quote]Good idea! I can't for the life of me think why M&S would move to Spytty (the new town centre) and that nice new shop with all them shoppers. godobe

11:07pm Wed 30 Jan 13

portman says...

HurricaneShane wrote:
Llanarth Street is hardly central...
Well i wouldn't say it's an out of town development it's about 20yds from the center of commercial st. Well done Leisuretime
[quote][p][bold]HurricaneShane[/bold] wrote: Llanarth Street is hardly central...[/p][/quote]Well i wouldn't say it's an out of town development it's about 20yds from the center of commercial st. Well done Leisuretime portman

2:53am Thu 31 Jan 13

plumbob1 says...

Magor wrote:
Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem.
M&S lease was up in Commercial St and apparently the building was leaking and contained asbestos.
The landlord would not carry out repairs so they moved out.
[quote][p][bold]Magor[/bold] wrote: Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem.[/p][/quote]M&S lease was up in Commercial St and apparently the building was leaking and contained asbestos. The landlord would not carry out repairs so they moved out. plumbob1

4:17am Thu 31 Jan 13

jonathant says...

can we find out who owns the buildings in Newport? and who are supposed to be charging the really high rents, which are making the businesses move out. Really .. Newport the first city you see when you come into wales... It should be Great.., why as all the money gone to Cardiff ?. Ok everything ( Almost everything has moved out) we have a blank canvas to work with. Come on I am sure we can bring newport back. "Instead of ditching it use it."
can we find out who owns the buildings in Newport? and who are supposed to be charging the really high rents, which are making the businesses move out. Really .. Newport the first city you see when you come into wales... It should be Great.., why as all the money gone to Cardiff ?. Ok everything ( Almost everything has moved out) we have a blank canvas to work with. Come on I am sure we can bring newport back. "Instead of ditching it use it." jonathant

9:09am Thu 31 Jan 13

47alan47 says...

Never heard of Llanarth Street until now, you learn something everyday in this paper. I always thought of it as the street with the chippy on it.
Never heard of Llanarth Street until now, you learn something everyday in this paper. I always thought of it as the street with the chippy on it. 47alan47

10:08am Thu 31 Jan 13

D Taylor says...

plumbob1 wrote:
Magor wrote:
Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem.
M&S lease was up in Commercial St and apparently the building was leaking and contained asbestos.
The landlord would not carry out repairs so they moved out.
There have been rumours for years that M&S wanted to leave the Commercial Street shop because the premises were unsatisfactory. Including the presence of asbestos. They showed an interest in an early version of the Friars Walk development but everything is taking too long. They grabbed the opportunity to move to NRP. Some people think that they will be back in Newport Centre eventually though.
[quote][p][bold]plumbob1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Magor[/bold] wrote: Can the Argus contact the likes of M&S to find out the real reasons why they have moved.They are still here so Newport cant be the problem.[/p][/quote]M&S lease was up in Commercial St and apparently the building was leaking and contained asbestos. The landlord would not carry out repairs so they moved out.[/p][/quote]There have been rumours for years that M&S wanted to leave the Commercial Street shop because the premises were unsatisfactory. Including the presence of asbestos. They showed an interest in an early version of the Friars Walk development but everything is taking too long. They grabbed the opportunity to move to NRP. Some people think that they will be back in Newport Centre eventually though. D Taylor

1:35pm Thu 31 Jan 13

Dee-Gee says...

That's what I heard, too. If you've ever been in the Oxfam shop on the same block, there's often an awful smell of damp in there, too.

Probably nothing a bit of investment wouldn't take care of, but too many landlords are either ridiculously short-sighted, or just don't have the capital to invest.
That's what I heard, too. If you've ever been in the Oxfam shop on the same block, there's often an awful smell of damp in there, too. Probably nothing a bit of investment wouldn't take care of, but too many landlords are either ridiculously short-sighted, or just don't have the capital to invest. Dee-Gee

1:59pm Thu 31 Jan 13

Daffy2 says...

An ex employee has mentioned the rates on the new lease were 15% higher than the new site for M&S, also that the landlords increase in price were for upgrades to the old building (basically he put the rent up to charge M&S to have the work done).
An ex employee has mentioned the rates on the new lease were 15% higher than the new site for M&S, also that the landlords increase in price were for upgrades to the old building (basically he put the rent up to charge M&S to have the work done). Daffy2

2:05pm Thu 31 Jan 13

D Taylor says...

jonathant wrote:
can we find out who owns the buildings in Newport? and who are supposed to be charging the really high rents, which are making the businesses move out. Really .. Newport the first city you see when you come into wales... It should be Great.., why as all the money gone to Cardiff ?. Ok everything ( Almost everything has moved out) we have a blank canvas to work with. Come on I am sure we can bring newport back. "Instead of ditching it use it."
You can search the Land Registry but it costs £3 for each premises researched. So unless you're really interested it would be too expensive.

I did try the old M&S shop (9-12, Commercial Street) and surprisingly, although the LR database recognised the address, it didn't have any documents registered. I suppose that this may be because it has been in the same ownership for many years since land is only registered on change of ownership so far as I know.
[quote][p][bold]jonathant[/bold] wrote: can we find out who owns the buildings in Newport? and who are supposed to be charging the really high rents, which are making the businesses move out. Really .. Newport the first city you see when you come into wales... It should be Great.., why as all the money gone to Cardiff ?. Ok everything ( Almost everything has moved out) we have a blank canvas to work with. Come on I am sure we can bring newport back. "Instead of ditching it use it."[/p][/quote]You can search the Land Registry but it costs £3 for each premises researched. So unless you're really interested it would be too expensive. I did try the old M&S shop (9-12, Commercial Street) and surprisingly, although the LR database recognised the address, it didn't have any documents registered. I suppose that this may be because it has been in the same ownership for many years since land is only registered on change of ownership so far as I know. D Taylor

8:57pm Thu 31 Jan 13

Ringo78 says...

Great more staff parking in BANESWELL without permits that us residents have to pay yearly for....Will just have to keep phoning the traffic wardens even more now!!!!!
Great more staff parking in BANESWELL without permits that us residents have to pay yearly for....Will just have to keep phoning the traffic wardens even more now!!!!! Ringo78

6:25pm Tue 5 Feb 13

merlin the silure says...

god I'm really underwhelmed by this news that TWO outfits are moving into the centre-these two will bring untold footfall and revenue-now lets have a few more estate agents,pawn shops and of course the charities moving in and Newp will really be back on its feet
god I'm really underwhelmed by this news that TWO outfits are moving into the centre-these two will bring untold footfall and revenue-now lets have a few more estate agents,pawn shops and of course the charities moving in and Newp will really be back on its feet merlin the silure

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