All systems go for Cotswolds Designer Outlet at Ashchurch

Robert Hitchins Ltd, the long-established regional property developer, has appointed a leading international construction company Bouygues UK to deliver the first phase of the prestigious Cotswolds Designer Outlet.

Construction will commence in November 2023 ahead of a Spring 2025 opening.

The outlet destination will introduce fashion, lifestyle, homewares, sport, outdoors and F&B brands, in a beautifully designed setting that creates a premium guest experience for visitors. Tapping into the tourism market that this area’s historic and cultural attractions generate, Cotswolds Designer Outlet has the potential to form part of a unique ‘full day out’ experience in this gateway to the Cotswolds location.

Robert Hitchins has had long term aspirations to create a premium retail outlet offer in this location, which benefits from strong connectivity by road, with Ashchurch for Tewkesbury Railway Station within a 5-minute walk from site, as well as a new shuttle bus service which will connect with Tewkesbury. Cotswolds Designer Outlet is well placed to serve a significant catchment area between Bristol and Birmingham from its prominent position on Junction 9 of the M5 motorway and attract visitors into the area.

Property & Development Director Simon Tothill comments: “Cotswolds Designer Outlet has the potential to make a meaningful, lasting contribution to the region’s growth; the combination of a strong location, thoughtful design and a hugely positive response from leading brands, has us highly optimistic for its future success. We’ve had long-term aspirations to bring an outlet destination to this site, given the unique opportunity of its strategic location between Bristol and Birmingham, and with historic Tewkesbury right on our doorstep. We’re proud to be working with an internationally recognised contractor, completing a first-rate team that we have assembled for this programme. We look forward to sharing more milestones with the community, as we announce new construction jobs, and the new fashion, lifestyle and F&B brands that we will be bringing to this incredible location.”

Bouygues UK’s Managing Director for the South West and Wales, John Boughton comments: “We can’t wait to get started on this project for Robert Hitchins, bringing both economic and social value to the area with an exciting new retail outlet and brand new facilities, set in stunning landscaped surroundings. As always, we are looking forward to involving the local community as much as possible, working with our local supply chain partners and employing a high percentage of local labour. We’ll be using innovative digital solutions including building information management (BIM) throughout the project, to ensure a high quality, efficient and collaborative delivery.”

Cotswolds Designer Outlet is central to Robert Hitchins’ long-term vision for this 300-acre site and follows the opening last year of the flagship Dobbies Garden centre, with Waitrose Foodhall and café. Robert Hitchins has also completed a £20million investment into crucial infrastructure and connectivity works in the location, which has helped to pave the way for the new homes currently being delivered in the area.

The construction project is expected to create more than 300 jobs, while the outlet centre is likely to create up to 500 new retail job opportunities for the area.

Designed by architects Roberts Limbrick, the scheme’s design has been influenced by the area’s architectural surroundings and inspired by local materials to create a contemporary Cotswolds style balancing modernity and tradition. Leading outlet retail specialist Realm is leasing the scheme and will be the asset and property managers upon completion.