A typical representation of a Puregym facility, similar to the one opening in Barnstaple (Image: Puregym)

Barnstaple leisure development to get gym instead of restaurant

A ‘state-of-the-art’ gym is set to open at a new shopping and leisure development in North Devon – but it comes at the price of a restaurant.

Artist impression of the Oliver Buildings development
Artist impression of the Oliver Buildings development
National fitness firm Puregym are set to open a new facility in Barnstaple next month.

Work has already started at unit 5 of the new Anchorwood Bank development, one of three units which were originally planned to be restaurants.

Earlier this year, a planning application to change the unit’s intended use from “food and drink” to “non-residential” use was approved by North Devon Council.

On their website, Puregym say the premises will open on October 2.

It says: “Once we open, the state-of-the-art facility will offer members everything they need to get moving including a huge range of the best kit from leading brands, a wide choice of gym classes and a top fitness team on hand to keep everybody motivated and inspired.

“Our local gyms are designed to fit into smaller spaces which means we can bring affordable fitness into local communities across the country.

“Plus, there’s free parking on-site and our memberships are contract-free.”

The gym lies next to two vacant units which have been empty since they were completed in the summer of 2018.

National restaurant chains Frankie and Benny’s and Chiquito had been due to open branches in the vacant units.

However The Restaurant Group, which owns both chains, told Devon Live last year they were “reviewing their options” and both units are now being advertised to rent through property firm Montagu Evans.

Puregym will be the latest outlet to open at the shopping complex, which already boasts a Next, Iceland Food Warehouse, DFS, Tapi Carpets and an Asda supermarket.

It will also include 172 houses built on the site by North Devon Homes.

In July 2018 Wessex Investors announced a joint venture agreement between themselves and regeneration specialist Acorn Property Group to transform the derelict Oliver buildings on the Anchorwood Bank site.

The pair plan to transform the crumbling buildings into apartments and duplexes with more than 13,500 sq ft of commercial space on the ground floor.

Andrew Strathdee, land manager for Acorn Property, said the Oliver buildings offered an opportunity to “provide a bridge between the past and the future and the North with the South of the town”.

Source: Devon Live

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