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Have your say on what you would like to see go in to the former Clarke’s ironmongers in Aylsham

PUBLISHED: 12:19 05 April 2018 | UPDATED: 12:19 05 April 2018

The former Clarkes ironmongers in Aylsham. Pic: www.archant.co.uk

The former Clarkes ironmongers in Aylsham. Pic: www.archant.co.uk

The buyer of the former Clarke’s ironmongers in Aylsham market place is looking for a commercial tenant to take over the ground floor of the historic building.

The former Clarkes ironmongers in Aylsham. Pic: www.archant.co.ukThe former Clarkes ironmongers in Aylsham. Pic: www.archant.co.uk

It was hailed as the sale of the year - and now it could make Aylsham a new go to destination with the buyer of Clarke’s ironmongers looking for a new tenant to help breathe new life into the town’s marketplace.

Henry Cockerton, from Brown & Co, acting on behalf of the local investor who recently bought the much loved, Grade II listed former ironmongers right in the heart of Aylsham, said the buyer was looking for a commercial tenant for the 2,000 sqft ground floor - either one business or up to three.

So, it could be a restaurant, deli, cafe or shop, subject to planning, hopefully reinvigorating Aylsham’s town centre and giving local people what they have wanted to add to the businesses already thriving in the town.

Mr Cockerton said: “I have been retained by the investor to assist in bringing back to life the building. The investor is very keen that the building is preserved so it will look exactly the same except structurally it will be improved and updated inside but apart from that, and a different name above the door, Clarke’s lives on in Aylsham.

The former Clarkes ironmongers in Aylsham. Pic: www.archant.co.ukThe former Clarkes ironmongers in Aylsham. Pic: www.archant.co.uk

“I myself live in Aylsham and I grew up in Itteringham so I am going to be as sensitive as anyone could be with the renovation of Clarke’s. We want to know what people want to go in to the ground floor -so speak now and be part of the most exciting commercial project Aylsham has seen for a long time.”

The buyer is keen to secure a commercial tenant before work commences to renovate it because certain businesses will dictate particular work and although the rental price is on application, Mr Cockerton said it was based on the average commercial rental in Aylsham of £30 per sqft.

That will form the first phase of renovation and then the first and second floors of the building will be converted, most probably for residential use.

Mr Cockerton said it was not known exactly how many apartments could be created because it was necessary to work with Broadland District Council as well as English Heritage. “The investor is keen on helping to bring people into Aylsham and make it a landmark market place,” he added.

The imposing building at number 30, Market Place, was formerly a store run by the late Alan Clarke, and much loved by local people as being a shop which always had what you wanted – even if it took Mr Clarke a little bit of time to find it.

The store closed some years ago and the property lay empty but went under the hammer at auction last September, at a guide price of £450,000-£500,000 with Brown & Co and Horners. However, it failed to sell, with bidding just stopping short at £420,000.

In January, it was revealed a buyer had been found - but wanted to remain anonymous.

Have your say! What would you like to see go into the ground floor of Clarke’s? Contact Brown & Co if you are interested as a tenant on 01263 711167 or see www.brown-co.com

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