Strategic Land

St Modwen appoints new Director at Trentham Gardens

Trentham Leisure Ltd, the subsidiary of St Modwen Properties PLC which owns Trentham Gardens, Stoke-on-Trent, has appointed a new Operations Director to lead the operational side of the £100 million redevelopment of the gardens which will commence shortly.

John Lowther, who has many years experience of setting up and running tourist and leisure operations around the country, started work today (July 1). He will be gearing up the marketing and promotion of the Trentham Gardens estate for the launch of the first stages of the restoration and redevelopment which will open next year. His on-going responsibility will be the operation and management of the entire estate.

He has previously worked with organisations such as Granada plc. More recently known for the launch and operation of Vinopolis City of Wine, a London-based visitor attraction owned by Wineworld London plc, Mr Lowther joins Trentham Leisure from the posiiton of CEO with Spring Health Leisure plc which operates a chain of health and fitness clubs, restaurants, bars and function facilities around the UK.

St Modwen and its partner Willi Reitz, are committed to Trentham Gardens becoming one of the UK’s top tourist and leisure destinations. Mr Lowther’s role will ensure that this commitment is fulfilled. Whilst having a regional and national identity, this will include continuing and improving the estate as the venue for high profile local events such as the Potteries Marathon, Stoke in Steam and the Staffordshire University Awards.

Mr Lowther will work with Mike Herbert, the St Modwen director responsible for delivering the physical restoration, new development works and commercial letting, and with the existing Trentham Gardens management team.

Anthony Glossop, Chief Executive and Deputy Chairman of St Modwen, commented: “This is a high profile appointment for a high profile site. John Lowther comes to us with an excellent background in the tourist and leisure industry. It is a further demonstration of our belief in Trentham Gardens as an opportunity of major importance in North Staffordshire and beyond.”

* Last month Trentham Leisure announced that detailed designs for the first stage of the £100 million redevelopment and restoration scheme had been submitted to Stafford Borough Council. The first phase – the provision of a large garden centre, a range of retail pavilions for heritage, leisure and craft-related retailing – is planned to open in Spring 2004.

The 4-5 year restoration of the gardens will be undertaken at the same time as the commercial development.

For further information contact Mike Herbert of St Modwen on 01782 281844.

Issued by Paul Raymer of Howle Chapman Raymer (0121-236-7771).