Former Odeon in line for sale

AFTER a three-year search, a buyer may have finally been found for Ipswich's former Odeon cinema, it emerged today.

AFTER a three-year search, a buyer may have finally been found for Ipswich's former Odeon cinema, it emerged today.

The building has been empty since 2005 but property firm Savills has revealed that final negotiations are underway with a potential buyer and a new owner may be in place in a matter of months.

Neil Perrin from Savills, which recently took control of the building, said: “We have had a number of offers since we put the site on the market three months ago and there is currently interest form several parties.”

Numerous suggestions for future usage have been put forward for the former cinema since its closure.

Ambitious proposals to turn the building into a major new leisure complex came to nothing after a developer instead decided to put it up for sale in October.

London-based Close Ventures, which provides funds for leisure ventures, invested £4.1million in Premier Leisure (Suffolk), which owns the Odeon site and building, in March last year.

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But Close Ventures decided to sell the building and look elsewhere in Britain.

Now it seems there has been a sudden surge of interest in the building - although a new occupier may not be moving in immediately.

Mr Perrin said: “The level of interest in it reflects the fact that it is one of the largest sites available in the town centre and it is a relatively new building.

“However, while several potential buyers have shown an interest, these things always have a habit of taking some time.”

How would you like the building to be used? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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