From Urban Outfitters to IKEA: Readers on what Topshop building should be

Topshop and Topman on Haymarket, Norwich. Picture: Bethany Whymark

The sale of the Haymarket building that house Topshop and Topman is expected to close this month for a sum of £3 million. - Credit: Archant

With the sale of the property that housed Topshop expected to be completed this month, speculation is building about what will replace the old clothing shop.

The unit in the Haymarket, one of the only shops bought outright by Topshop owner the Arcadia group before its collapse, is being sold for £3m.

The selling price is only a quarter of what Arcadia bought it for in 2016.

The prospective buyer is described as "a national property developer which specialises in mixed-use developments".

Many readers of the Norwich Evening News stated they wanted the space to become a centre for the homeless.

Dinah Butcher said: "I'd like to see it turned into a day centre for homeless and vulnerable people and made to be an indoor or outdoor space so people will feel more welcomed but not trapped or enclosed there.

The collapse of Sir Philip Green's Arcadia Group has seen the closure of Topshop

Readers are speculating that the building could become a homeless shelter or even a live music venue. - Credit: Simon Parkin

"It would be good to include a daily medical drop-in facility and somewhere to shower, launder clothes and optional day activities like hairdressers, vets, and therapists."

Others hoped a new clothes retailer will take the space, with American brand Urban Outfitters being a popular choice, while others like Alison Derry said they wanted it to become "something similar to Primark, with reasonable clothing for all the family".

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"I would love to see a full size IKEA in Norwich, after they got rid of the one on Sweet Briar Retail Park," said Paul Manning.

Another popular choice was for it to become a music venue.

Cathy Bilton said: "It's away from housing, so no complaints, and with the new student accommodation in the city now it would be ideal.

"Separate levels could even have different music."

Other readers wanted something more interactive like a "giant soft play", or a spa and swimming pool, or an indoor street food market.

Some readers are even hoping for the grand return of Woolworths to our high streets in the building.

Duncan Edwards hopes it can be a space promoting diversity and said: "It could be secure parking for cyclists and a vegan-only eating space.

"We need somewhere that is welcoming and diverse and hopefully it could incorporate some green space."

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