Sandbox at Grand Central

Harry Cody-Owen

Hammerson has signed the world’s most advanced virtual reality experience, Sandbox VR, as part of its vision to diversify the use of Grand Central in the heart of Birmingham and an ambitious strategy to reinvigorate its assets through new brands, entertainment, and experiential concepts.

The 13,000 sq ft unit – set to open this summer – is the brand’s third in Europe and largest to date. This signing supports Sandbox VR’s plans to expand across the UK and Ireland, while elevating the experiential offer at Hammerson’s Bullring & Grand Central, in-line with the wider evolution of the destination.

Taking group virtual reality gameplay and competitive socialising to the next level, Sandbox VR creates a truly immersive experience within exclusively designed interactive worlds, making players feel like they are living inside a game or a movie. The unmatched adventure is powered by a new generation of Hollywood motion capture cameras, 3D precision full-body trackers, custom hardware and haptic feedback suits, enhancing the touch, vibration, and motion senses for the user.

Bruce Gillingham Pollard (BGP) advised Sandbox VR on the letting. BGP associate director, Harry Cody-Owen, added “Following the successful opening of Sandbox at its London location in July, we are delighted to have also advised on Sandbox’s second UK venue. They add to the brilliant line-up of best-in-class leisure with Toca Social and Lane 7 both expecting to open in summer. I have no doubt Sandbox will be a huge success and I having played the games myself; I know the people of Birmingham will be equally blown away.”

Alongside its ground-breaking gameplay, Sandbox VR Birmingham is set to include the brand’s much-loved robotic bartender ‘Toni’. Shaking, stirring and serving up to 80 drinks per hour, Toni adds another unique experience to Grand Central’s unmatched hospitality and leisure offering.


Tracey Pollard

F1 Arcade Confirms Birmingham for its Second Venue

Victoria Broadhead

F1 Arcade, the first Formula 1 licensed premium experiential venue of its kind, is to occupy an 11,000 sq ft unit at Paradise Birmingham, the £1.2bn business, leisure, and residential development in Birmingham. The move marks only the second UK venue for the brand after its first venue in London…

Bruce Gillingham Pollard appoints new Equity Director as Head of Investment

Tracey Pollard

BGP is active across Retail Capital Markets and most recently advised The Ardent Companies UK on its acquisition of the retail element in the landmark Royal Exchange building in the City of London. Commenting on the appointment, BGP’s Managing Director, Tracey Pollard said: “Jack joined us a graduate in 2012…

Ardent UK Completes Royal Exchange Acquisition

Woody Bruce

Advised by BGP, The Ardent Companies UK has completed its acquisition of the retail element of The Royal Exchange in the City of London from Oxford Properties. The Royal Exchange, located opposite the Bank of England between Threadneedle Street and Cornhill, is the City’s leading luxury retail destination. Providing 51,400…

The Portman Estate appoints Bruce Gillingham Pollard to advise on its independent retail portfolio, Portman Marylebone

Charlotte Roberts

The Portman Estate has appointed Bruce Gillingham Pollard as advisers for retail, restaurant and leisure property on its 110-acre estate in London’s Marylebone. The instruction encompasses leasing agency and also lease consultancy across the Estate’s Portman Marylebone retail portfolio.

Bruce Gillingham Pollard Director, Charlotte Roberts, commented: “The Portman Estate already provides one of the most interesting variety of places to shop, eat and drink in London. From the increasingly stylish offering on Chiltern Street through to the network of streets and mews around Portman Square, new developments and initiatives being brought forward by the Estate continue to set Marylebone apart as a leading destination for independent retail and unique consumer experiences.

“We’re enormously excited about working with The Portman Estate to further elevate the location through introducing new brands and raising awareness of all that it has to offer.”

The Portman Estate recently became the first Estate to gain B CORP™ certification joining the global movement of trailblazing businesses who meet the highest standards of corporate social responsibility and make a positive contribution to people, communities and the environment. The certification is a designation that a business is meeting excellent standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency on factors from employee benefits and charitable giving to supply chain practices and input materials.

Tom Knight, Portfolio Director at The Portman Estate, added: “We are committed to proactively curating the retail and leisure offering across The Portman Estate to further establish Marylebone as a vibrant destination of choice for all.

“We are looking forward to working with BGP to further evolve the personality and quality of our independent retail and leisure partners across Portman Marylebone.”

Vinoteca opens first outlet outside of London

Victoria Broadhead

Vinoteca has taken a 3,390 sq ft unit in MEPC’s Paradise mixed-use development in Birmingham. The restaurant at Two Chamberlain Square is Vinoteca’s seventh outlet. Vinoteca co-founder Charlie Young said: “Birmingham has always been quick to embrace new food and drink concepts, and we felt this was the perfect setting…

New Associate for Bruce Gillingham Pollard National Leasing Team

Tracey Pollard

Bruce Gillingham Pollard has appointed Lucy Gardiner as an Associate in its National Leasing Team. Lucy has 10 years of experience across the F&B market and a wide range of knowledge across the UK and excellent relationships with key landlords and brands. These relationships will be vital in her new…

Sandbox VR – UK’s First

Tracey Pollard

This weekend, why not head to the newly opened Sandbox VR UK in Museum Street, London. Jump into a high-tech virtual reality world and choose to be at the centre of a zombie attack or fighting pirates on the high seas. London’s first Sandbox VR uses Hollywood motion capture cameras,…

Bruce Gillingham Pollard recruits Central London Leasing Director

Tracey Pollard

BGP has appointed Lizzie Knights as a director in its Central London leasing team.

Formerly with Colliers and BNP Paribas Real Estate, Lizzie has extensive experience of working on retail and leisure leasing across prime London locations including Grosvenor’s Mayfair and Belgravia estates; Shaftesbury’s Soho and Carnaby holdings; Argent’s Coal Drops Yard at King’s Cross; and Leadenhall Market in the City of London.

BGP managing director, Tracey Pollard, said “Lizzie is an expert in curating retail portfolios to deliver best-in-class brands and occupier mixes.

“Her previous experience is aligned to the growing number of prime instructions on which BGP is instructed across London.”

Lizzie has worked with a wide variety of brands to secure their first London sites, including HURR, Colourful Standard, Senturion and Aime Leon Dore.

She said: “I’m very much looking forward to being involved in projects such as MARK’s Borough Yards development, St Christopher’s Place for Columbia Threadneedle, and also continuing working with Grosvenor in Belgravia and Mayfair”.

Journey to Net Zero ♻️

Thea Rowe

BGP are committed to achieving net zero and setting a suitable path to science based targets to help the business achieve this. We are delighted to be part of Grosvenor Net Zero Mentoring Programme alongside green consultancy The Heart of The City. This will enable our business to calculate baseline, set an…

Edward Bulmer Natural Paint to Pimlico Road Design District

Lucy Cope

We are pleased to have worked alongside our client, Grosvenor to bring Edward Bulmer Natural Paint to Pimlico Road Design District. The design world’s ‘go to’ eco friendly paint brand, pioneering plant based paints made from raw materials reducing the effects on buildings, health, nature and the planet! Their sustainability…

Landsec appoint Bruce Gillingham Pollard across food and beverage portfolio

Tracey Pollard

Bruce Gillingham Pollard are delighted to have been appointed by Landsec to join their new retail leasing agent panel,  working across the hospitality portfolio which includes food & beverage, fitness, leisure and hotels. The panel, which has been formed as part of Landsec’s new operating model launched late last year,…

Oxford Street

Charlotte Roberts

Last week we launched our third retail store on Oxford Street to market. An interesting time for the street when in the same week, the first kiosk & trading pitch has been de-designated from the public realm. This alongside the repositioning of the department stores, arrival of Crossrail & investment into the public realm makes for a location of huge opportunity & growth.

Barry’s Bootcamp

Charlotte Roberts

This week our wonderful client BARRY’S BOOTCAMP LTD announced the launch of their Liverpool opening in the summer of this year. Liverpool standby for the best workout in the world from the market leaders… For more information, please contact Charlotte Roberts or Victoria Broadhead

Piccadilly Lights

Charlotte Roberts

This week we launched the marketing of the retail and F&B at Piccadilly Lights. An iconic London building with flagship retail, a rooftop and other restaurant / bar opportunities wrapping around the globally recognised digital advertising space. For further information, please contact Woody Bruce, Charlotte Roberts or Lucy Cope.

BGP Connects EP5

Evie North

BGP connects Episode 5

“Houses close to streets full of independent retailers sell for 20% more” evening standard

On our next instalment of #BGPconnects Evie North speaks to Chris Daly of Greenland U.K.

They discuss the rising trend of London Neighbourhoods, the impact covid-19 had on this trend and more specifically on the evolution of The Ram Quarter.


6 Days to go

Thea Rowe

The next generation of family clubs Jaego’s House will open in Kensal Rise in May 2022, quite literally something for all the family under one roof. Members will have access to a whole range of services: a jungle gym and soft play; crèche and childminding; Co working office; studio and fitness…

7 Days to go

Tracey Pollard

The growth of the neighbourhoods and localism have been key themes for the last 12 months.  We have experienced an increase in demand for both London neighbourhood locations and nationally, where we’ve seen lots of activity with lettings in Guildford, Windsor, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Birmingham, Reading and Leeds. The increase in…

8 Days to go

Dominic Tixerant

Hawskmoor made a splash with their new opening in Wood Wharf this month! The new, eco friendly floating restaurant has brought a whole new dynamic to the Canary Wharf estate. The restaurant is Hawksmoor’s most ambitious restaurant yet, split across three floors with a 150 cover restaurant and 120 bar ‘The Low…

9 Days to to

Lucy Cope

Following the success of their pop up on Duke of York Square, the Lincolnshire born sustainable jewellery brand Daniella Draper have now opened their first standalone store in London on the King’s Road.

“The whole team are so excited to have opened in London and particularly on the King’s Road. To be able to have a physical presence in the South of England is really important to us.”

Many have questioned whether there will be a shift in focus for independent brands post Covid and whether the importance of having a presence in the capital will diminish. The last 12 months has shown that this certainly isn’t the case and the Daniella Draper opening further demonstrates the importance of independent brands having a bricks and mortar presence in London.

Jamie Orme acted on behalf of Daniella Draper, please get in touch with our tenant rep team – Jamie Orme & Thea Rowe if you would like help finding your first site.

As a company we cover a number of affluent neighbourhood instructions, please get in touch with the leasing team if you would like further information.

Countdown to Christmas

Tracey Pollard

What a year 2021 has been! Despite the lows of restrictions and lockdowns, there have been some highs and here at Bruce Gillingham Pollard we have been exceptionally busy. SO, we thought it only right to celebrate some of those highs. Over the next 12 days we’ll be sharing with…

18th Century pub brought back to life by JKS

Rupert Bentley-Smith

We are Delighted to see JKS Restaurants reopen The George Fitzrovia last Thursday. This exciting venture is in partnership with renowned publican Dominic Jacobs and celebrated chef James Knappett. Along with JKS they form a remarkable team who have restored this beautiful 3 storey, 18th century, grade II-listed building, and…

BGP Connects EP4

Harry Cody-Owen

“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten” Tony Robbins This episode of #BGPConnects @hcodyowen speaks to Mark Bourgeois on his time as MD of UK and Ireland for @hammerson_plc. They discussed the future of retail as well as Mark’s journey into the industry. Now…

Isola by San Carlo

Tracey Pollard

Back in the height of lockdown in 2020, BGP relet one of the most prominent restaurants in Central London, the old Carluccio’s in St Christopher’s Place. Whilst a full-scale lockdown of the hospitality industry might not have been the best time to let a West End restaurant, the flight to prime had commenced and interest was high.

Now 18 months later, the hard work has paid off and Isola, a bespoke concept from San Carlo is open and looks magnificent at the heart of the Piazza. Working with Marcello Distefano and his team has been a wonderful experience, resulting in a true partnership of ideas in terms of design and concept.

This 220 cover restaurant features a massive 50 cover alfresco terrace in the heart of St Christopher’s Place, catering for its diverse catchment of office tenants, West End shoppers and tourists.  A soft palette of yellows, greens, and pinks, shine through in the design, which combined with the extensive shellfish and sea food display, transports you immediately back to a relaxed summer holiday vibe.

Emily Dumbell and Tracey Pollard, worked with Victoria Shields of BMO to secure this letting, whilst San Carlo Restaurant Group were advised by Sammy Weinbaum of CDG leisure.

Bruce Gillingham Pollard are sole agents for the restaurant and retail lettings at St Christopher’s Place.


Tracey Pollard

We’re excited to kick start our week by announcing that, following 3 excellent presentations and 12 months of incredible hard work, Lucy Cope, Thea Rowe and Sophie Moorcroft have all been promoted to Associate Director. 🥂 We are extremely proud of their achievements, personal growth, and the contribution they have each…

Wapping Hydraulic Power Station – Realm

Tracey Pollard

Isn’t this the most amazing building? It’s the Hydraulic Power Station in Wapping and we are looking for its next tenant. The building has planning permission granted for the introduction of new floors within the listed building, together with the creation of a glazed extension within the roof level water…

New starters

This month we welcome two new members to the team, Alex Todd & Euan Anderson. Both join as graduate surveyors following completion of their property degrees and will then go on to sit their professional assessment to become Chartered surveyors. Our MD, Tracey Pollard commented “As we celebrate our 10th…

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