8 July 2015
Claire Armstrong discusses what the Great British Summer events series means for Land Securities’ broader commitment to placemaking...
Last week retro caravans broadcasting televised coverage of Wimbledon returned to the City and West End as part of the Great British Summer. Now in its 7th year, the series brings outdoor screenings of the world’s greatest tennis championship to the capital, alongside rooftop yoga sessions and a hotly contested bake-off. The events are available to all, free of charge.
The caravans are parked at three Land Securities locations: atop One New Change overlooking St Paul’s, Cardinal Place roof garden in the heart of Victoria, and New Street Square, a five-minute walk from Chancery Lane. The screenings are accompanied by pop-up bars and market stalls, and always prove hugely popular with the public.
The Great British Summer series is a fantastic way for us to bring new visitors to our destinations and provide our customers, be they tourists, local residents, or retail and office occupiers, with fun ways to spend their lunchtimes, evenings and weekends.
The significance of these events extends beyond just creating a buzz, however. They form part of our wider commitment to placemaking, which sees us ensure that our projects facilitate far-reaching benefits for the communities and environments in which we operate.
Across the City, we are helping to transform the area from a purely business centre to a retail and leisure destination with broad visitor appeal. One New Change has drawn the best high street brands to the City, as has 1&2 New Ludgate, where Coco di Mama, Association Coffee and Charles Tyrwhitt recently let space. Meanwhile, at 20 Fenchurch Street, the Sky Garden has drawn thousands of visitors since making the best views of the capital available free to all for the first time when it opened earlier this year.
In Victoria, businesses, retailers and restaurateurs are flocking to the area as SW1 continues its transformation from an office backwater into a hub of culinary excellence and leading brands. Our ongoing £2bn investment in the district has spurred this transformation, and has encompassed far more than the introduction of exceptional office and retail spaces.
Across Victoria, we partner with local authorities, schools and charities to ensure that the area’s regeneration has a positive impact on everyone in the community. This has recently included working alongside Westminster City School and Pimlico Academy to provide students with the opportunity to learn more about the real estate industry, and develop employable skills, through our Introduction to Property Programme.
At Land Securities, we understand that our success depends on the success of the areas in which we operate. Increasingly, businesses looking for new office space are as interested in surrounding amenities as they are in the quality of the space itself – often with an eye on attracting and retaining talent. When it comes to retailing, top brands will only move to locations which complement their offer and host a catchment that has the potential to become a loyal customer base.
For us, placemaking is more than an industry buzzword, it’s at the heart of our company’s success.