In December 2018, after months of preparation with the Council and Delancey we opened up the application process for the new affordable units that are being planned for the independent businesses to move into.
Planning permission was granted on the basis that Delancey would provide new units for the displaced businesses. They have already developed a row of retail units in an adjacent development called Elephant 1 and they plan to create a new popup retail village just outside the redline area in what is known as Castle Square. In addition, Southwark Council is developing retail space in the ground floor of nearby Perronet House by the Bakerloo tube entrance.
All the independent businesses have been engaged in the opportunity to apply for one of these units and the relocation support funding that accompanies it. They needed to prepare a sound business plan and a workable cashflow forecast to do so. This is where our expertise came in. Working to a tight deadline our team of dedicated Tree Shepherd business advisors delivered more than 180 confidential business clinics, peppered with group workshops and seminars to help all the eligible business owners put together their plans. Simultaneously, we organised property tours so that the owners could make informed choices on where they would like to move to and continuously kept both the council and Delancey up-to-date with people’s needs.
The 18th February 2019 was the deadline for the applications to be submitted along with evidence of trading. As midday came, we signed off the last of the 60 business plans with just a few minutes to spare. Now it is with the respective landlords to assess the plans and work out which business should go in which location. It will be a very difficult task as all the bushiness are amazing. We wish them all the best of luck as they await the news of the allocation and then the next phase of the programme will begin.