What's happening with the former H Samuel city centre store?

The former H Samuel unit is up for rent for £65,000 

The former H Samuel unit is up for rent for £65,000 - Credit: Ben Hardy

An empty retail unit located in a prominent city centre street is available to rent after sitting dormant for months.

The former H Samuel store in Gentleman's Walk is currently boarded up after the jewellers closed a number of stores across the UK when Covid struck. 

But the empty shop is now available to let for £65,000 per year with agents Brown & Co. 

It is available on a new full repairing and insuring lease.

A sign announcing the closure of H Samuel which has only just been taken down

A sign announcing the closure of H Samuel which has only just been taken down - Credit: Ben Hardy

The ground floor if predominantly open plan and the lower ground floor has a further sales area, storage and kitchenette.

Stefan Gurney, executive director of Norwich BID, said he would welcome any interest to help put Norwich in the best place. 

He believes the recent purchase of the Royal Arcade, "substantially above its guide price" will have a positive effect on other investors nearby.

Speaking about the empty unit, Mr Gurney added: "That is in a prime retail street in the city as part of the local development plan.

Stefan Gurney, executive director of Norwich Business Improvement District Picture: Sonya Duncan

Stefan Gurney of Norwich BID is confident as the city continues to recover post lockdown - Credit: Sonya Duncan

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"We have talked to a lot of property agents about working with landlords so it is not solely flat rates and there is an opportunity to look at profit share as well." 

Mr Gurney also highlighted Norwich is below the national level of vacancy rates.

H Samuel took a decision to close its retail stores in March 2020. The retailer continues to operate as an online business but also has an outlet in Chantry Place.

Anna Smith, commercial surveyor associate at Brown & Co, said the recent commitment of Costa to take on the former Jack Wills shop opposite Jarrold, shows the potential of the location.

She added: "The prime Norwich retail pitch has generally been considered to be Gentleman’s Walk and in particular the Rampant Horse Street end.

“The former H Samuel building is therefore perfectly positioned to benefit from increased footfall around Jarrold as well as the busy Norwich market.”

A recent sign on the unit, which has now been taken down, told H Samuel customers contact details for the Chantry Place unit as well as details for the customer service helpline.