Big shopping centre in Ballymena sold – Fairhill sold to Magell
Fairhill Shopping Centre in Ballymena – once famous for its ‘a big Shopping Centre in Ballymena, hi‘ slogan, has returned to local ownership. The Walker family, owners of the Magell property company, are said to have bought the complex from a UK based property company Rockspring Property Investment managers, which had bought it over in 2015. At that time, Fairhill had a price tag of £46m with over 95% occupancy, however it’s thought the latest deal was significantly less than that – possibly even as low as £10m, according to a Belfast Telegraph report.
The value of shopping centres is said to have declined in recent years – with the trend made significantly worse by the pandemic. The Flagship Centre on Bangor’s main street remains shuttered. Fairhill and Castlecourt lost anchor tenants when Debenhams folded.
Marks & Spencer remains the largest anchor tenant at Fairhill – which spans almost 300,000 sq ft. It’s expected that the new owners will dedicate more space to food and drink outlets – enabling increased footfall.
The deal is expected to complete later this year – thirty years after the centre first opened, in 1991.