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Shell Store named as Commercial Development of the Year finalist

The transformation of Hereford’s former munitions site into the county’s first dedicated business incubation centre is in the running for a top property award.

The £7.3m project at the Shell Store on Skylon Park has been shortlisted in the Commercial Development of the Year category of the Insider West Midlands Property Awards.

Barnwood Construction was the principal contractor on the project which saw the First World War site transformed into 2,500 sq metres of flexible and lettable business space under the site’s iconic roofline.

The development, led by Herefordshire Council and Skylon Park and Hereford Enterprise Zone Board will support new and growing enterprises as well providing conference, meeting and office space.

Councillor David Hitchiner, Leader of Herefordshire Council, said: “It has been fantastic to see new life breathed back into the Shell Store, which has played such a significant role in the history of Hereford.

“The building has been transformed around the original steel frame, providing a home for new and young enterprises, helping to build local skills and expertise and drive economic growth.”

Chairman of Hereford Enterprise Zone Andrew Manning Cox said: “As an ‘enterprise zone’, Skylon Park was keen to bring the building back into productive economic use with any development needing to be sensitive to its heritage.

“The Shell Store offers exactly the sort of high-quality start-up and grow-on space which Hereford needs to enable us to nurture the next generation of businesses.”

“New, innovative and growing enterprises will benefit from being part of Skylon Park’s thriving business community with support on-site provided by the Enterprise Zone team and the Marches Growth Hub.”

The success of the transformation involved multiple partners including Quattro Design Architects, One Creative Environments Ltd for the M&E design, Caulmert for the Civils and Structural design and Mace Group as project manager.

Principal contractor Barnwood Construction delivered the refurbishment and fit out of the project and Taylor Lane Timber Frame developed the internal pod structures which sit beneath the building’s historic roofline.

The West Midlands Property Awards – the region’s big celebration of commercial property – will celebrate the best of the region’s real estate successes during a challenging year. Winners will be announced on November 4 at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole.

The Shell Store was funded by Herefordshire Council, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and a loan from the Marches LEP’s Marches Investment Fund.

It was officially opened by Robert Jenrick, then Secretary of State Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), in July 2021.

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