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Charles Saunders Food Service acquires Brakes’ former cold store facility

Charles Saunders, one of the largest independent food service companies in the South West, has acquired the freehold of the Brakes Group’s former cold store premises at Armstrong Way in Yate.  Advised by Alder King, the company purchased the 45,755 sq ft facility from Brakes, which was represented by JLL, for a figure in excess of £3 million. 

Charles Saunders has been supplying the catering trade with fresh fish and frozen food for over 50 years, operating from custom-built premises in St Philips for the past 20 years. 

The expansion of its product range and delivery areas, which grew substantially following its acquisition of Good Morning Foods and Disposables in 2012, meant it had outgrown its base and Alder King was appointed to source new premises.

Andrew Ridler, partner in charge of Alder King’s industrial and logistics agency team, said: “This has been a particularly challenging requirement to resolve due to Charles Saunders’ specific requirements.  Brakes’ recent move to new purpose-built facilities at Portbury meant its former cold store facility was becoming vacant.  Anticipating its arrival on the market, we made an early offer which was accepted before the opportunity was widely marketed.”

Darren Gaulton, managing director of Charles Saunders, added: “We are planning further investment in the building and will relocate in the summer.  The new building will give us a larger cold storage capacity and a complete wet fish facility, as well as accommodating our wide range of non-food products.”

The property also includes a large yard area to accommodate Charles Saunders’ 35 strong fleet of modern custom-made vehicles.  The company’s wide delivery area is centred on Bristol and extends into South Wales, the Dorset Coast and North Devon as well as Birmingham and east to Swindon.  The property’s location gives excellent access to the regional road and motorway network.

Giles Weir of JLL commented: “There are few freehold opportunities of this type and it was no surprise that the sale was transacted so speedily.”

Photo caption from left to right: Andrew Ridler of Alder King, Darren Gaulton, managing director of Charles Saunders, and Giles Weir of JLL.

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