Retail Property - Bids in on Leicester's Haymarket

Negotiations are under way for the multi-million pound sale of Leicester's Haymarket shopping centre.

The centre came onto the market with a£60 million price tag last July, in a deal that is an integral part of a planned regeneration programme for the East Midlands city.

London-based property company, Fairacre, is in talks to purchase the centre's holding firm - Leicester Centre Properties - from its owner, Chartwell Land. If the deal goes ahead - which could be within the next few weeks - the centre will come with permission to expand onto the site of Leicester's famous Haymarket Theatre.

The theatre will be demolished, and a new one built, as part of a£31 million development of the St George's area of the city. The new owner of the Haymarket will have to buy the theatre's lease from Leicester City Council, and the money will go towards the new theatre and leisure complex.

Several potential bidders have been in the frame to purchase the Haymarket Centre since it went up for sale, but none have been successful. Neither Fairacre or Chartwell would comment because of ongoing negotiations over the sale.