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Greater Bristol industrial take up figures show increase in activity during first quarter of 2020

07 04 20 industrial bristol

Take up figures from Western Branch of the IAS show year-on-year improvement.

Industrial take up in Greater Bristol during the first quarter of 2020 was up on the same period last year, with 342,740 sq ft and 7.53 acres of land let or sold in a total of 36 deals.

The Western Branch of the Industrial Agents Society (IAS) has released figures showing an increase in activity in the early months of 2020, compared to Q1 2019 when 201,426 sq ft was sold or let across 34 deals.

Tom Watkins,
chairman of the Western Branch of the IAS, commented that the figures were an encouraging start to the year, but cautioned that it was still unclear how the COVID-19 pandemic would affect take up for the rest of 2020.

“The COVID-19 crisis is inevitably going to affect take up as companies focus on the matter at hand as opposed to their relocation plans, but the extent of this is as yet unknown,” said Mr Watkins, who is head of the Industrial & Logistics team in the South West and South Wales office of Colliers International.

“Notwithstanding this, the fundamentals of the South West industrial sector remain strong, built on a lack of available stock and pent up demand.

“However, it’s difficult to predict at present when these deals will materialise. We have to assume the tap won’t open again until COVID-19 is over and Government policies have started to be relaxed.”

The biggest leasehold deal of the quarter in the Greater Bristol area was the letting of 44,462 sq ft with B2/B8 use at St Modwen Park Access 18, Avonmouth, in Bristol. The largest land sale was of 6.53 acres at Plot 5B on Severn Road, Avonmouth.

Mr Watkins added: “Statistics for Q1 2020 are actually up compared to Q1 2019, which recorded 201,426 sq ft across 34 deals. This shows that there was an increase in activity in the first couple of months of this year following the general election, which is an encouraging start to the year, but clearly it remains to be seen how the take up will look for the next few quarters.”

The IAS Western Branch is a committee that represents agents acting on behalf of landlords of industrial premises across the South West and South Wales. The committee is made up of agents from companies including Knight Frank, Carter Jonas, CBRE, Colliers International, Alder King, Russell Property Consultants, BNP Paribas, Lambert Smith Hampton, Burston Cook.

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Tom Watkins


Industrial and Logistics


I joined Colliers International in 2012 for a years placement as part of my degree at Bristol UWE.  Since completing my degree I re-joined the Bristol office in 2014, and qualified as a Chartered Surveyor the following year, and then subseqnently managed to secure promotions year on year until being kindly awarded Directorship in  2019.

I am now Head of the South West Industrial & Logistics team based out of Bristol, specialising in the disposal and acquisition of industrial premises in the South West and South Wales regions, as well as providing specialist advice on industrial/warehouse  development.

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