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LONDON-The Midlands is the current hotspot in the UK industrial market, with rental growth in the region continuing to outperform the rest of the UK according to new research from Atis Real Weatheralls.

While industrial rents across the UK grew by an average of just 1.1% in the first half of 2003, Leicester saw industrial growth of 4.8%, with Coventry at 4.5% and Birmingham at 4.25%. Of the major Midlands centres only Nottingham experienced zero growth.

Caroline Mills, regional head of industrial property at Atis Real Weatheralls, said the lack of quality supply as the driving force behind the Midlands industrial market. “The ongoing shortage of good quality industrial space should sustain the region’s current rental growth and will provide a solid platform for future growth in the Midlands once long-term economic conditions improve,” she said.

Atis Real Weatheralls’ report also highlights the continuing trend towards owner-occupation in the industrial market, especially in the 5,000 to 25,000-sf size bracket, as occupiers take advantage of current low rates of interest.

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