Property expert 'very confident' sale of Five Star Fish factory will bring new jobs to Grimsby

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 10 Oct 2018

The commercial property expert tasked with finding a buyer for a major £3.75 million fish processing factory in Grimsby is “very confident” he will secure a sale that will help to create new jobs in the town.

The Five Star Fish site, which is situated on the Great Grimsby Business Park, is being marketed by PPH Commercial – one of the region’s biggest commercial property specialists.

Hitting the market last month, as reported, it followed the Easter announcement it was to close, with the loss of 390 jobs. 

The purpose-built food production facility is in a recognised industrial area close to other notable food businesses, including Seachill – which has plans to double in size there – as well as Havelok, Morrisons and Hain Daniels Group, where footprint expansion is also on the horizon.  

Chartered surveyor Duncan Willey is trying to find a buyer for the 100,000 sq ft site, set on four acres by the A180, and he believes the large factory will soon be snapped up by a national or regional company that’s keen to tap into Grimsby’s food processing expertise.

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He said: “Sadly, a decision has been made to close the current business, which was obviously a big blow to the staff who are employed at Five Star Fish.

“However, we have already received some positive interest in this significant property and I’m very confident that its eventual sale will boost the local economy by helping to create new jobs.

“Almost every major UK food retailer still buys their seafood from Grimsby and the town continues to be a thriving hub for seafood processing. Good quality food production buildings are hard to find and Grimsby is home to some of the best sites anywhere in the UK.”

PPH has already handled the sale of the former XPO Logistics site to Young’s Seafood this year, allowing Grimsby’s biggest operator in the sector to consolidate further work in the town, having picked up the Marks & Spencer work that was Five Star Fish had to give up, and brought salmon processing south from Scotland. 

With around 500 food-related companies processing 70 per cent of the nation’s seafood, the industry is worth more than £2.5 billion to the local economy.

The Five Star property, on Athenian Way, was built in the early Nineties under the original ownership of Grimsby Town director John Fenty, and underwent significant improvements in 2009 when extensions and additions were made. 

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The facility now has two main production areas with cold, chilled and ambient storage. On the upper first floor there are engineering offices, a large canteen, changing rooms and staff facilities. An adjoining two-storey administrative building has a selection of private and general offices with an attractive ground floor entrance.

Having already fielded a number of enquiries, Mr Willey believes the site’s history will work in its favour.

He added: “This building is ready-made for food production. Subsequently, it is much more cost effective – and far more appealing – than a new build premises. Hopefully, that will prove to be a very attractive benefit for potential buyers.”

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