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Ipswich: Business as usual for Riley's Sports Bar despite talks about selling land

PUBLISHED: 12:48 17 June 2014

Rileys Pool Hall, Ipswich.

Rileys Pool Hall, Ipswich.

The company that owns Rileys Sports Bar in Ipswich has insisted it's business as usual for the Princes Street snooker and pool centre despite today's discussion about Ipswich council selling the site.

The borough’s executive is to discuss selling the site to allow new offices to be built for Ipswich-based law firm Birketts.

The council owns the freehold of the land which is leased to Suffolk Life Annuities Ltd. That company sub-lets part to RCP as a temporary car park and part to Rileys for its sports bar.

However Rileys, which sub-lease the site off Suffolk Life Annuities, say nothing has yet been decided and the firm has no plans to move.

Head of property for Rileys Arlene Maguire said: “We are still trading from that site and expect to continue to do so for the foreseeable future.”

She said any development would probably be some years away and Rileys would like to extend its lease at the site.

“It is business as usual for us and nothing has been decided about the future of this site,” she added.

If the borough decides to go ahead with the sale in principle at tonight’s executive meeting it would take about a year for the deal to be completed.

Ipswich council leader David Ellesmere said the authority had been in talks with its own tenants about the proposed sale – and it was up to them to discuss the issue with those who sub-let the site from them.

Meanwhile after tonight’s executive the borough is expected to have further discussions with Churchmanor Estates, which would build the office for Birketts, about the proposed sale of the land for £245,000.

Such a deal would ensure that Birketts, which has about 200 members of staff and is hoping to expand, has a major new base near the town centre and railway station.

The borough hopes that this deal could encourage other businesses to consider building new offices in the Princes Street area – the council owns other land on the other side of the street including the Drum and Monkey pub and garage premises.

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