ALTRINCHAM Forward, the public / private sector town centre regeneration partnership, has established a new Landlords Forum.

This bring together landlords, agents and property owners for the first time.

All major property owners and agents have joined and the first meeting was very well attended.

The need for a forum was identified as a priority in the Town Centre Action Plan.

The aim is to enable regular dialogue and negotiation with those responsible for the town centre’s shops and offices.

The forum will focus strongly on identifying and attracting new businesses to Altrincham, will share best practice and refer enquiries to other Forum members where appropriate, so that no opportunity is lost to the town.

Cllr Matt Colledge, chairman of Altrincham Forward, said: “The Landlords Forum is crucial in our efforts to revitalise the town centre. It will enable us to better understand the problems landlords and tenants are experiencing and to provide the support they need to attract and retain businesses.

"We are already working together to use available resources for a Loans Fund to help new tenants with the initial costs of fit-out and shop front refurbishment and will be announcing the details of this new initiative in the near future.”

Richard Peel, managing director of Merepark and forum member, said. “The forum is a real breakthrough in how we deal with filling vacant premises in the town centre and avoiding further closures.

"Altrincham Forward has already developed a register of empty properties, which includes details of ownership/commercial agent, size and condition. Together with a centralised enquiry system, the proposed loan scheme and a more strategic approach to targeting potential tenants – we hope to see many more units filled in 2013.”

Anyone who is interested in setting up a business in Altrincham or who wants details of available premises should contact Penny Bell on 0161 912 4384.