Behind the scenes at new Sailmakers shopping centre in Ipswich as refurbishment forges ahead

Ben Gummer at the Sailmakers' site.

Ben Gummer at the Sailmakers' site. - Credit: Archant

A £4 million project to transform Ipswich’s Tower Ramparts Shopping Centre into Sailmakers has been welcomed by MP Ben Gummer during a visit to the site.

Artist's impression of Sailmakers - the new name for Tower Ramparts.

Artist's impression of Sailmakers - the new name for Tower Ramparts. - Credit: Archant

He was given a tour of the centre, which has remained open and trading normally, by centre manager Mike Sorhaindo and held talks with the Centre Management team and retailers.

Mr Gummer said: “It was great to go around Tower Ramparts and see its transformation into the new Sailmakers.

“Tower Ramparts was an important addition to the town in the 1980s but has become tired and in need of considerable work.

“It is great that LaSalle is investing such a considerable amount of money in refurbishing the centre which has already pulled in new tenants and I am sure will bring even more in the months to come.

“There are some more exciting developments to come connected with the site and I would like to commend LaSalle for its vision and the investment it is making in the town.

“I would also like to commend Barnes Construction who are doing an excellent job in refitting the centre whilst allowing businesses to continue trading.”

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Mr Sorhaindo said: “We were delighted that the MP found time in his busy schedule to come and see the work that is taking place here to revitalise the shopping centre.

“He has a very clear vision of how he wants the town to progress and the investment being made here at Tower Ramparts is playing a leading role in the development of the town economically.”

The new development has also prompted a complete refit of one of the centre’s most popular stores, Topshop, who have signed a new 10-year contract at the shopping centre.

Gavin Ingram, Associate Director, LaSalle Investment Management who market the Centre, said: “We were pleased to be able to show Mr Gummer the works that are being carried out here by Barnes Construction who are a major local construction company with an excellent track record.

“They are an Ipswich business with a workforce based in the area. They use local sub-contractors and supply chains and this is a further boost to the area.”

Mark Bailey, Divisional Director at Barnes Construction, said: “As a local business Barnes Construction are delighted to be involved with the refurbishment of the Tower Ramparts to create Sailmakers.”

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