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Demand for online food deliveries drives letting of Cullompton warehouse

Industrial & Logistics Agency

Property consultants Alder King in Exeter, acting on behalf of Goonvean Holdings, have let a new-build warehouse building at Goonvean Business Park in Cullompton in Devon to the online artisan food retailers Pipers Farm.

In 2017, the owners of Pipers Farm chose to close its high street shop in Exeter to focus on its online delivery service, a model which proved both successful and fortuitous given the huge demand for online food delivery services during lockdown.  The transaction was completed at speed in the early stages of lockdown to allow Pipers Farm to service the growing volume of customers from the new unit.

Noel Stevens, partner and head of Alder King in Exeter, explained: “This letting was agreed at a time when many retail businesses had to rely completely on their online presence.  Pipers Farm had a head start with both a strong online product offer and reputation but securing this unit allowed them to expand their output and maintain their 100% year on year growth record. It was a real team effort in challenging circumstances to get it over the line.”

Abby Allen, sales and marketing director at Pipers Farm, said: “Before the outset of the pandemic, we were already on the hunt for high quality, sustainable and eco-friendly warehousing and office accommodation to provide a suitable base for our new state of the art fulfilment centre.  Based just a short distance from the farm itself, Goonvean Business Park was the perfect solution.

“While the timing was challenging, with the support of Alder King and the team at Goonvean, we are excited to move into our brand new premises, allowing us to make the most of our continued growth.”

The success of Goonvean Business Park also illustrates the increasing importance of towns like Cullompton as a home for growth businesses in Devon.

Goonvean Business Park is a new four unit scheme owned and developed by Goonvean Holdings primarily for Goonvean Fibres, one of Europe’s largest technical fibres manufacturers.

Goonvean Fibres, a well-known employer in Honiton for many years having reluctantly made the decision to relocate, set about developing a purpose-built manufacturing site for its own occupation at Venn Place in Cullompton.  It relocated into its 55,000 sq ft unit last year, providing it with more space to accommodate rapid commercial growth.

It also developed two 12,000 sq ft semi-detached industrial units.  Pipers Farm has leased Unit 12.  The adjoining unit is currently occupied by Goonvean Fibres and will be available to let from Q1 2021.

Goonvean Business Park is a positive addition to Cullompton, providing high quality, sustainable and eco-friendly warehouse and office accommodation.  Located adjacent to the established King’s Mill Trading Estate and less than half a mile from J28 of the M5, it offers ideal space for companies looking to secure space in this part of Devon.

In a separate transaction also completed this year, Alder King has sold the freehold of Goonvean Fibres’ previous premises in Honiton.  The 27,120 sq ft detached warehouse building was acquired for an undisclosed sum by Jurassic Fibre, the Exeter-based broadband business which is building a multi-million pound new network across Devon, Somerset and Dorset.

Noel Stevens says the sale, agreed in May, demonstrates the strength of the industrial property market in the South West.

“Both before and during the lockdown, demand for industrial/logistics space, and particularly freehold space, has been extremely strong, with capital values for better quality, well-specified space holding up well.”

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