Stuart House celebrates summer with a party in Peterborough

The recently revitalised office space shook off those post-summer blues at their End of Summer party this week (19 September).

The party, hosted by Eddisons’ onsite management team, ran across the day with mocktails, fresh fruit and sweets on offer, with flamingo ring toss and hook-a-duck to keep Stuart House tenants entertained. There was also a prize draw to guess the amount of sweets in a jar – with prizes ranging from free coffee, free lunches, and the jar of sweets itself!

The building boasts high-quality amenities and workspace solutions for a variety of businesses and people, but the End of Summer party gave us all a chance to join together and spend some time with each other away from our desks.

Community Manager Jade Blackmore commented: “It was great to see our tenants socialising, competing against others they had never met. Everyone said it was a beautiful set up and extremely enjoyable on a miserable, windy day.

We’re looking forward to more events like this at Stuart House.

For more information on the workspace, our onsite team on [email protected] on our managing agents, Andrew Smith & Jason Ghayour through

Eddisons renews sponsorship with Peterborough’s premier business networking event

Eddisons will be one of the main sponsors of the annual Opportunity Peterborough Bondholder Dinner.

One of the key networking events on the calendar for companies doing business in & around the city, this is a brilliant time for businesses in Peterborough.

Organised by Opportunity Peterborough, the city’s economic development company, the dinner brings together over 400 guests across the city from business, local government and academia in the impressive setting of the nave of Peterborough Cathedral.

Eddisons’ office in the city has a sponsorship association with the event that stretches back through the years to a time before the national firm of chartered surveyors firm acquired regional commercial property firm Barker Storey Matthews in 2019.

Announcing the renewal of the sponsorship for the 2023 Bondholder Dinner – which takes place on 19 October – Steve Hawkins, Regional Managing Partner, who is based in Eddisons’ Peterborough office, said, “The dinner is a much anticipated and well attended event for anybody who does – or wants to do – business in the city.

“Peterborough has really scaled-up in economic development terms over the past decade, and is set to keep unlocking its potential with some more turnkey projects in the remainder of this decade.

“Eddisons’ property professionals in the city have been part of making this happen and we’re proud to carry on playing our part in the city’s prosperity.

“Sponsoring the annual bondholder dinner offers us the opportunity to celebrate the city’s achievements alongside our business and civic peers and exchange views about where we can take the city next.”

We look forward to getting stuck back in to Peterborough’s networking culture.

Scunthorpe smells… beautiful?!

Hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of fragrances and beauty products are going under the hammer in North Lincolnshire following the demise of one of county’s last locally owned department stores.

Hills Department Store has been a landmark town centre shopping attraction in Spalding since the late 1950s, owned for more than sixty years by members of the same family. When they decided to call it a day three years ago, a local entrepreneur stepped in to save the business, renaming it Coneys and making changes that it was hoped would ensure its survival.

Unfortunately, it was not to be. At the end of May came the announcement that in the face of significantly increasing costs and declining sales it had been decided there was no alternative to closing the store. The company has gone into liquidation and they have now instructed Eddisons to sell off the entire contents of the store.

Emptying a department store of close to a million pounds worth of cosmetics, homewares, clothing, footwear and wines & spirits at retail value is an interesting challenge. It took two articulated lorries and a fleet of removal vans three days to achieve the transfer from Spalding to the Eddisons Auction Centre in Scunthorpe.

The stock is to be sold in a series of online auctions, the first of which – a two-day sale involving the contents of the Coneys Beauty Department – is to take place on Tuesday September 26th and Wednesday 27th.

The auction extends to 782 lots from some of the world’s most famous luxury brands: Dior, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Valentino, Estée Lauder, Jean Paul Gaultier, Giorgio Armani, and on and on.

The creations going under the hammer in the sale include a vast range of perfumery and make-up, plus some very upmarket body care and toiletry products. There is also quite a number of gift sets providing various combinations of perfume/makeup/hand cream/soap etc.

Incidentally, the gift sets include a number aimed at men. There is nothing very surprising about the Dunhill London Century’s set of shower gel and aftershave (apart perhaps from the £59 recommended retail price) but the Clinique set might be alien territory to some chaps – face scrub, charcoal face wash and anti-aging moisturiser.

That said the most expensive single lot in the auction is a men’s fragrance – Royal Water, a scent made by Creed, the Parisian perfume house that was, believe it or not, founded by an 18th century English tailor. Royal Water is, claims Creed, ‘a fragrance for the glamorous socialite’. Clearly a chap who doesn’t mind shelling out the recommended £245 for just 120ml.

Following on from this auction will be sales of the other stock including wines and spirits, clothing, footwear, home and giftware and furniture.

The online auctions will take place from Tuesday 26 September – Wednesday 27 September, with viewing available on Monday 25 September.

Should we worry about asbestos as well as RAAC?

As RAAC hits the headlines with asbestos rearing its head along with it, how can our industry weather another building material crisis like the ACM cladding scandal?

Surveys are the order of the day for many schools, hospitals and public buildings across the country after the government confirmed the reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete within hundreds of school buildings was past its lifespan. However, critics are worried that this rushed approach to removing RAAC will aggravate pre-existing asbestos within these areas, exacerbating an already difficult problem.

A combination of a nationwide demand for remediation, the short notice of closing the schools, and the lack of general knowledge around RAAC has made the removal of the product an imperative. However, removing RAAC could disturb underlying asbestos – which was used as insulation for most of the time that RAAC was also being used.

National Education Union leader Daniel Kebede has warned that 90% of schools still contain asbestos, with other spokespeople saying it is more likely to be 80%. Either way it is not a position that schools want to be in at the start of term: battling potentially two dangerous defects and relying on virtual learning once more.

What is concerning is how prevalent RAAC has been used across the country. Early lists have shown that there are huge swells of schools in both Essex and the North East, showing that this is not a geographically-isolated incident. Meaning that the more schools likely to have RAAC, will also be likely to have asbestos.

To calm the media, PM Rishi Sunak has stated that 95% of schools will not be affected by the RAAC “crisis”. But how many public buildings will feel obligated to request surveys to check that their environments are fit for purpose? And how many of them will find asbestos along with RAAC? How will that impact everyday life?

Further down the line, legal experts are concerned that, much like the ACM scandal, building companies and contractors will find themselves in a serious legal battle to prove that they are not responsible for what experts are describing as “a circus”. These materials – RAAC, asbestos, even ACM – were legal when used, so whose fault is it that they were later found to be dangerous?

The public sector can only work with the information they are given, and currently that is direction to have their school tested for RAAC. We can support you from initial diagnosis, and through to remediation. Get in touch for advice and help in planning your next steps.

Peterborough acts for historic Cowgate investment

A single block of properties in the historic centre of Peterborough is up for sale as a multi-let investment opportunity for over £2.2 million through the local office of Eddisons.

The series of properties runs from 14-30 Cowgate and sees three retail units with offices above, further detached and semi-detached office properties, and, additionally, clinic premises accessed by a pedestrian passage and courtyard to the rear.

The parade of properties has been under the same ownership for several decades and, with the exception of one office, is fully let.

Eddisons describes its latest instruction as a ‘rarely available investment opportunity’ and advises that there is scope for partial redevelopment in the middle of the parade, subject to relevant permissions.

The agent also adds that while 14-30 Cowgate is within the city’s conservation area, none of the properties have Listed status.

Cowgate, running parallel to Priestgate, is in the central commercial district of of Peterborough’s historic city centre and has a mix of retail & office occupiers.

It is one of the main routes with vehicle access leading to the pedestrianised Cathedral Square area and Bridge Street thoroughfare.

Eddisons’ Julian Welch (right), who is leading the sale of 14-30 Cowgate, is confident that the instruction will attract interest from a range of investors.

He said, “While acknowledging that the froth of the mainstream commercial property investment market has dissipated in the past twelve months, one-off multi-let investment opportunities like this one on Cowgate can still command serious attention.

“It’s a solid investment opportunity for the right investor.

“In looking for offers in excess of £2.2 million, we are reconciling its value in the current market with that of the long term opportunity.

Viewing of the property for sale, at 14-30 Cowgate, Peterborough, is strictly through Eddisons as the sole agent.

To arrange a viewing or for more information, contact Julian Welch at Eddisons in the city, 01733 897722, [email protected], or through

RAAC update: beam collapse influences Government to close schools

The story is moving fast that schools across the country have been closed after the holidays end, following a collapsed beam highlighting just how dangerous RAAC materials are in school buildings.

Reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete is bubbly to look at and to touch, and was seen as a cheaper and quicker alternative when building large institutions like schools and hospitals between the 1950s and mid-1990s.

Only recently a school was closed due to a fallen RAAC support beam that had been held in place with RAAC, bringing to light the fact that the lifespan of the material is coming to an end.

We reported on RAAC in June after the NAO and DfE released a report showing over 600 schools – 38% of all state schools – across the country were on the brink of collapse, even though years earlier, the government estimated that percentage was closer to just 3%.

RAAC unfortunately has a lifespan of roughly 30 years which puts buildings constructed between the 1950-1990s using RAAC at significant risk of material failure. We support the decision to shut schools in case of tragedy, but we have strongly recommended surveying for defects in your RAAC for a long time in a hope that this could be avoided.

Director of our Manchester office Ashley Parkinson comments: “those in the building industry have been expecting something like this for a while, but this sudden decision could have been avoided with regular due diligence.”

“As experts in building consultancy within the education sector, we would recommend having a survey done immediately to grant you peace of mind. Hopefully, it will be nothing, but it is better to be safe than sorry.”

Eddisons offers condition surveys across Great Britain, as well as other building and project consultancy services, on top of expertise pertaining the education sector such as CIF application and decarbonisation schemes.

Rounding off a busy summer for one Cambridge agent

Looking over some of the smaller local commercial lettings secured over the summer by Eddisons in Cambridge, the agency remain confident about the local market ahead of the autumn in, describing it as ‘steady’.

The market is looking ‘steady’ after a busy summer.


During the summer, new occupiers have been secured for premises in Ely and Soham in East Cambridgeshire, Haslingfield in South Cambridgeshire and Cambridge City – among other locations covered by Eddisons’ local office.

Many of the operators are already in situ and have begun trading ahead of autumn.

Included in the latest agency round-up is a new café on Forehill, Ely – one of the main retail thoroughfares of the cathedral city. In the nearby town of Soham, a carpentry & joinery firm has secured its new premises in a unit at Ashley Industrial Estate.

Eddisons Fore Hill Ely
Forehill, Cambridge


On the southern outskirts of Cambridge, a company specialising in baby products is a new occupier at Penn Farm Studios in the village of Haslingfield.

In central Cambridge, a local branch of a national eggless cake franchise has opened for business at 174 Mill Road. And, most recently, the letting of a former barber shop on nearby Thoday Street, will see a new use as a studio salon for a permanent make-up artist & practitioner.

Joe Berry (pictured), Eddisons Cambridge, believes the deals highlighted in the summer round-up show the diversity of the commercial offer in the area.

He said, “These lettings demonstrate the ongoing confidence shown by small business operators in Cambridge and its surrounding market towns and villages.

“The setting up of new ventures and the growth of existing ones – whatever the size of the enterprise or its property requirements – are key to the ongoing commercial prosperity of the area.

“It has been a busy summer of lettings for our agency team and we’re confident that our new instructions will set a steady pace in the autumn.”

For more information about business premises available to let in Cambridge and the surrounding area, contact Joe Berry at Eddisons in the city, tel: 01223 467155, [email protected], or through

New to market in Newmarket: new-build is perfect for HQ office

The Cambridge agency of Eddisons has just launched a three storey, new-build office building in Newmarket for freehold sale at £1.95 million.

Described by the agent as a ‘headquarter style’ level of office building, Morecroft House is 8,430 sq ft (783.12 sq m) in total across three floors including full height glazing, reception area & central staircase.

Each floor of Morecroft House has a kitchen and cloakroom facilities and there is a passenger lift to all levels.

On Willie Snaith Road – Newmarket’s main commercial office location – the office building is on a security gated site with access control and has full CCTV coverage.

There are 48 dedicated car parking spaces, of which 22 are fitted with EV charging points.

Nearby office occupiers include GenesisCare’s Oncology Centre and Mattioli Woods, financial wealth management advisers.

Eddisons advises that Morecroft House could be suitable for a number of potential uses including fit-out for R&D or medical healthcare or more conventional office, business services use.

According to Ben Green, Director of our Cambridge office, Newmarket is increasingly in the mix for R&D or laboratory occupiers given its proximity to Cambridge.

He said, “The squeeze on such space in Cambridge has been well documented for a while – this year in particular.

Newmarket is perfectly placed to capture this Cambridge ‘spillover’ and Morecroft House affords a quality of freehold office offer that rarely comes forward for market sale.”

Eddisons is the sole agent under instruction for the freehold sale of Morecroft House.

Viewing is strictly by appointment through Eddisons.

For more information or to arrange a viewing, contact Ben Green or Joe Berry at Eddisons in Cambridge, tel: 01223 467155 or through

Units let in town’s established industrial location

Acting on behalf of the landlord, Eddisons has confirmed the letting of three modern warehouse units, with offices, in Huntingdon’s most established industrial trading location.

The local office of Eddisons had sole agency on the units at Tower Close on the St Peter’s Road Industrial Park, where the space, totalling over 57,000 sq. ft. was being offered to let in part or as a whole.

The new occupier of two of the combined units (2,394.47 sq. m./25,774 sq. ft.), numbers 7 & 8 is an operator involved in the development & supply side of the brewery trade.

Unit 9 (2,196 sq m/31,968 sq ft) has been let to a company specialising in relocation services to the scientific & laboratory sector.

According to Eddisons’ Huntingdon agents, St Peter’s Road Industrial Park retains its pre-eminence as the Cambridgeshire market town’s high profile industrial location due to its proximity to the A14/A1(M) interchange and onward road connections to the M6, M11 and the East Coast ports.

For more information about industrial units to let in and around the Huntingdon area, contact Matthew Hunt at Eddisons, tel 01480 571578, [email protected], or through

Cambridge: Latest report paints picture of ‘the greatest small city in the world’

Mark Critchley, Director at Eddisons, shares his thoughts on a new report published this summer that sets out to portray the state of the city.

Cambridge City Portrait: State of the City 2023 is a report Cambridge City Council commissioned analysts, Cambridge Econometrics, to produce.

While data-driven, it is far from dry in its portrayal of the city through ‘Six Lenses’ and there is even an online dashboard that ‘walks’ you through the data for each ‘lens’.

In the report’s foreword and introduction, the City Council’s Assistant Chief Executive, Andrew Limb, quotes Cambridge as the ‘greatest small city in the world’.

Setting aside that I’ve not, knowingly or otherwise, worked in another city making this claim but have worked in Cambridge for 17 years, the phrase perfectly conveys the property scene here: it’s great but it’s small – and that’s not without consequences.

Those doing business in the city will, undoubtedly, zoom straight in on the Business & Enterprise lens to highlight & comment on some of the most salient points to their own sector – as we have.

“The majority of land in Cambridge remains undeveloped, a rate unchanged over the past 5 years”

The supply of development land remains tight and, within the city boundaries, is often restricted to development of brownfield sites. Inevitably, this pushes up land values.


“Commercial property costs in Cambridge are some of the highest in the country”

This is most acute in the city’s core and main railway station area, spilling over to the northern boundary of the city to the Science Park where there’s a new development focus centred on the Cambridge North railway station.

“… Cambridge start-ups are more resilient and more likely to survive”

Start-ups often experience rapid growth, significantly increasing floor space requirements within months. Eddisons has been involved in a few acquisitions for start-ups where their space requirements have increased during the process of drafting leases for premises.


“Relative costs in Cambridge (City & Fringe) are highest for industrial space, which were 46% above the national city average in 2021/22”

Cambridge is not immune to the national picture where, since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the industrial sector has boomed. When we are acting for landlords on rent reviews & lease renewals, it’s not unheard of to be quoting 50% increases which, in simply reflecting where the market is, is met with disbelief by incumbent tenants.

“Cambridge’s research and development works force continues to grow”

The standout feature of the past two years has been activity in the Cambridge laboratory market. Boosted by the pandemic and the growth of life sciences businesses, the demand for lab/R&D space has reached a record high, resulting in a huge investment in the sector and a race on to deliver new stock.

“… Cambridge’s retail vacancy rate after June 2021, averaging 12%, was the 4th lowest of 58 cities in England and Wales”

There is a low level of empty units in the city centre. While one or two have experienced extended void periods, the resumption of the tourist & hospitality trades post-pandemic sees most now taken up by food & beverage sector operators.

“Cambridge’s workforce is growing faster than the number of homes though. Buying a home in Cambridge has become increasingly unaffordable”

The residential & commercial property markets more than overlap in this respect, with people having to look further afield for accommodation of all tenures.


Cambridge will always remain in the foreground of any picture portrait of the East of England. But it’s effect reaches well beyond its city boundaries. It is a great small city but, increasingly, what is meant by ‘Cambridge’ offers a much, much broader landscape.