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The partners behind the £150 million regeneration of Great Homer Street have completed a deal to relocate a 138-year-old Liverpool business, safeguarding 25 local jobs and ensuring it will continue to trade in the city.

Chas E Prossor Ltd will move just two miles from its current base within the Project Jennifer site, after Liverpool City Council and its development partner St. Modwen located and acquired new premises to rehouse the business on Stanhope Road. 

The successful negotiation is one of a number of discussions the partners are advancing to relocate businesses based at the 45-acre North Liverpool site ahead of a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) being granted.

Chas E Prossor, which imports and distributes protective clothing, has been based in Liverpool since 1873. The company had very specific requirements for alternative premises, including the need for high ceilings to allow stock to be stacked. St. Modwen and its agents Keppie Massie worked with Mr Prossor’s representatives to explore a number of relocation options before securing the suitable local premises, which will enable the business to retain all of its 25 local employees.

Michelle Taylor, regional director at St. Modwen said:  “This is a very positive conclusion to our long term discussions with Mr Prossor.

“We made a commitment early-on to relocate as many existing businesses as possible before CPO powers are used at the site. This has included acquiring four industrial estates in Merseyside to ensure a wide range of relocation options are available and working to secure other alternative premises as they come onto the market.

“We’re therefore very happy to see such a valuable Liverpool business able to continue trading and employing people locally, while making way for this vital regeneration project. We are advancing negotiations to secure fair and suitable relocations for other businesses at the site and look forward to announcing more good news in the near future.”

Under the deal, Chas E Prossor will occupy its existing premises while the relocation takes place to ensure a seamless move and minimise disruption to the business. The company expects to be fully relocated by the end of March.

Councillor Malcolm Kennedy said: “Project Jennifer will create a brighter future for North Liverpool, bringing in vital investment and creating new jobs. However, it’s equally important that we work closely with existing businesses to ensure that, amidst these ambitious regeneration plans, they can continue to thrive.

“I’m delighted we’ve been able to reach this agreement with Chas E Prossor Ltd, such a respected and well-established local firm. It’s the latest example of the work we are doing to support local businesses and help them acquire suitable alternative premises.  This work is continuing, and we are hopeful that we can find good solutions for a number of other businesses in the coming weeks and months.”

Known locally as Project Jennifer, the regeneration of Great Homer Street is set to transform a deprived 45-acre site and create more than 1,000 new jobs.

The plans have the commitment of Sainsbury’s, which has signed-up as anchor tenant to operate what will be Liverpool’s largest food store. In another vote of confidence in the plans, Liverpool City Council has announced that it is to relocate Notre Dame College to be part of Project Jennifer. A new purpose-built school will be created at the site by 2013 as part of the city council’s Investment Plan for Secondary Schools.

In March 2011 Liverpool City Council officially made the Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) needed to assemble the large-scale site, which includes approximately 200 land interests. A Public Inquiry will be held in summer 2012 to decide if the CPO will be granted. If successful, the retail phase of Project Jennifer could start on-site by spring 2013.

In addition to the food store, Project Jennifer has consent for 80,000 sq ft of additional retail units, 80,000 sq ft of light industrial units, 480 new homes, and 40,000 sq ft of community facilities, including a new library, market and community health centre.