LONDON-The Hercules Unit Trust, managed by Pillar Property, has secured its next phase of expansion with a new £250 million ($440 million) loan facility arranged by the Royal Bank of Scotland. The initial properties to be funded are Hercules’ retail parks at Rotherham and Dartford as well as a50% interest in the limited partnership that holds the retail park at Gallions Reach, Beckton. And further properties are expected to go into this facility during the course of 2004.

The Trust has just taken control of the Cortonwood retail park in Rotherham following completion of the second phase that took the park up to 226,000 sf. Tenants include B&Q Warehouse Boots, Next, Argos Matalan and McDonald’s.

And in Dartford, the trust already owns Phase 1 of the Prospect place retail park, where over 134,000 sf is is fully let to tenants including B&Q, Carpetright and Allied Carpets. Hercules has also entered into a forward commitment to purchase Phase 2 of the scheme which is due for completion in Spring 2004. Matalan has exchanged to take a 41,000 sf unit and Pizza Hut a stand alone restaurant comprising 3,189 sf.

The 208,000-sf Gallions Reach retail park in Beckton, East London, was originally developed by Castlemore Securities and forwarded funded by Pillar. It now appears that Pillar has created a new limited partnership to hold the scheme, with a 50% stake in this fund going into Hercules.

Jones Day advised Hercules and Allen & Overy RBS.

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