Sheffield city centre sports store staying put despite relocation talks

Retailer Sports Direct has confirmed it will stay in its current Sheffield city centre location despite enquiring about a possible move.

James France, the company’s head of global leasehold properties, said it did look at the possibility of moving into the vacant unit on Pinstone Street – last used by WH Smith.

Sports Direct, HIgh Street, Sheffield. Picture: Google.

Sports Direct, HIgh Street, Sheffield. Picture: Google.

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But he added the possibility of the move was now 'off’ and the company would be remaining on High Street for the foreseeable future.

He said: “We were looking at it at one point as we do with all our estate to maximise lease opportunities and relocations if required. This is now off as a potential relocation.”

WH Smith was forced to temporarily move into the Pinstone Street unit in January 2018 due to serious structural issues with the Fargate site.

An artist's impression of Heart of the City 2 in Sheffield, showing how a redeveloped Pinstone Street would look

An artist's impression of Heart of the City 2 in Sheffield, showing how a redeveloped Pinstone Street would look

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Contractors dismantled the building’s front wall piece by piece and scaffolding completely shrouded the place and a builders’ compound took up almost the entire width of the street, but in October contractors removed the poles and planks to reveal a reconstructed facade.

The stationer moved back onto Fargate in November.

Other firms on the move in the city centre include Next and H&M, who will both relocate from Fargate to The Moor.

Next will be housed in the former BHS unit, next to Debenhams, while H&M will be built on the site of the former Redgates toy store.

Both stores are expected to open this year.

Work is also continuing on the £500 million Heart of the City II project.

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The huge development is being built on 1.5 million sq ft of land between Pinstone Street, Barker's Pool and The Moor and will include shops, two four or five-star hotels, Grade A offices, apartments, leisure venues and a high-end food hall, all set around tree-lined streets and public spaces overlooked by rooftop bars and cafés.