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  • Writer's pictureLinda Andrews - Editorial Assistant, Nuse Online

Bracknell Office Market Emerging From Reading’s Shadow

Office take-up is growing rapidly in Bracknell this year, as momentum finally returns to the market in the Berkshire town.

Bracknell is now coming into a league of its own, according to office specialist Andrew Baillie, Associate at property consultancy Vail Williams. To date this year, total take-up for the town, which has historically sat in the shadow of Reading in office terms, has exceeded 112,321 sq ft of – a large proportion of which has been for fully fitted Grade A space.

This is against the backdrop of just over 100,000 sq ft of deals in Reading this year to date. Vail Williams has acted on more than 50% of the office deals in Bracknell this year. Scholl, Nielsen Media Research, Tempestas Capital, Chartered Institute of Builders, Allium UK, Basis Technology, Curve Workplaces, Brickability, Evelyn Partners have all done office deals in Bracknell this year.

Andrew believed the return to the office has had a role to play in reviving Bracknell’s fortunes, with 72% of companies globally mandating a return to the office, three or four days a week.

“There has been a complete re-think about what businesses need from their office space and where their base is best located."

“This has led many occupiers to take new leases in different geographical locations or in buildings offering a better standard and quality of space, with a blend of amenities and break out spaces."

“Thankfully for Bracknell, this is something that the town boasts in abundance, as investors have been quick to react to occupier demand for Grade A quality, fully-fitted and furnished office space.”

Vail Williams acted on three deals for landlord Sheik Holdings, spanning over 7,500 sq ft at landmark office building, The Lightbox. Newly refurbished 3 Arlington Square is also flourishing and has welcomed the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) who took 5,683 sq ft.

Andrew added: “Bracknell is a cost-effective location in rental terms, with rents sitting between £25.00 and £36.50 psf, and certainly one of the deals this year was for a business locating out of Richmond looking for better value."

“Bracknell also boasts excellent transport infrastructure, with London just a stone’s throw away on the train. Also, the redeveloped Lexicon, the main retail and leisure centre in Bracknell, has done wonders for the town. It has transformed the town and has made it a much more attractive destination – not just for businesses to locate to, but for existing occupiers to re-commit to."

“Indeed, 94% of the deals completed this year have been businesses already based in the town, who have committed to staying here for the next three to five years. And there’s a real breadth of occupier types too – from education and building design, to healthcare, tech, and TMT. It would seem that there’s something for everyone."

Of the 5.3m sq ft of office market stock, there is a supply of around 286,500 sq ft of Grade A space available. There is also plenty of choice of Grade B space in the market (201,000 sq ft), as well as an ever-increasing amount of grey space (tenant release space) coming to the market.

Overall vacancy levels currently sit at 9.1% with a provision of 3.25 years of stock levels.

Vail Williams’ full-service property advice includes commercial agency, investment and development advice, building consultancy, property valuation, planning, lease advisory, property asset management, business rates and occupier consultancy.


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