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LONDON-Leisure is increasingly seen as a key element in the success of larger retail parks and 13% of the UK’s retail parks now incorporate leisure facilities, according to new research from FPDSavills Commercial and TW Research Associates. The report said that developers are adding leisure facilities such as cinemas and health & fitness clubs within larger retail parks in order to increase the number of visitors to the schemes and to broaden the facilities available.

Trevor Wood of TW Research Associates said: ‘The analysis shows that out of the 756 established retail parks trading or under construction, 96 schemes now include a leisure element, which is a 95% increase in the last five years. The number of pure leisure parks increased from 33 to 92 during the same period.’

The most popular leisure facility on a retail park is a cinema, and 169 retail or leisure parks now incorporate multiplexes. Reflecting the increase in health club membership, 98 parks have a health & fitness club while bowling alleys – or family entertainment centres – are found on 76 schemes.

The review also identified a growing trend towards the inclusion of night clubs within out-of-town retail schemes, and 51 parks across the UK now incorporating a late night music venue. Another 40 schemes house a hotel while just four include a theatre.

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