Details of Banbury’s Castle Quay 2 development released

Robert Shepley - EditorBanbury News, Business

Banbury News - Castle Quay 2

Details of the £50m waterfront Castle Quay 2 development in Banbury, Oxfordshire have now been released.

Developer Hawkstone Properties have unveiled the names of the tenants for the £50m Castle Quay 2 (CQ2) canal side development after securing occupiers including a cinema, hotel and restaurant chains.


The Light Cinema company has been confirmed as the cinema chain operating the 1300 seat 8-screen cinema, and they will be joined by restaurants Handmade Burger Company, Zizzi, Chiquito’s and Nando’s in the canal-side setting.

“The Light chose Banbury as a developing town, currently without a modern cinema offering. The Light will be a premium cinema experience with a commitment to local community engagement, showing a broad range of films and events to appeal to all age groups,” commented Keith Pulling, CEO, The Light Cinemas Ltd.

As already announced by, budget supermarket Lidl has signed a lease on a 30,000 sq ft food store, while Premier Inn has agreed to open a 117-bed business hotel where all rooms will overlook the canal. The hotel will also include one of the Premier Inn in-house restaurant brands.

Two more restaurants will be announced shortly, making the scheme 100% let.

An important feature of the CQ2 project will be the canal side location. Restaurants and cafes will offer an alfresco dining experience, adjacent to an attractive waterfront setting.

The development will also provide an additional 240 car parking spaces for the town centre, including wheelchair accessible parking.

The final planning documents have now been submitted to Cherwell District Council, and it is hoped will be approved within the next few months. This will allow the developers to be on site by autumn 2017 with the majority of CQ2 being fully open for Christmas 2018.

With the cinema, hotel and restaurants set to attract much higher numbers of visitors to Castle Quay, shoppers will benefit from extended opening hours. The shopping centre will remain open until after midnight, to allow cinema-goers to walk through Castle Quay on their way home after evening films.

Castle Quay 2

Castle Quay 2

Hawkstone are developing the project on behalf of Aberdeen Asset Management, the owners of Castle Quay.

Cameron Murray, of Aberdeen Asset Management, said: “These are well-known names and new entrants to the town which will offer a huge amount of variety for existing and new visitors to Banbury. With over £35m being invested, the project will create employment opportunities and will have a positive benefit on the town centre and importantly the local economy.”

Simon Handslip, development director at Hawkstone Properties, said: “We are delighted to be an integral part of bringing this exciting development to Banbury town centre. It represents a major transformation of the town’s leisure and entertainment offer, and will be a wonderful extension to the already popular Castle Quay Shopping Centre, bringing with it hundreds of new jobs for local people.”

Cllr Barry Wood, leader of Cherwell District Council, said: “This project has been a long time coming for Banbury and will breathe new life into the town centre. For years Banbury has been calling for a multiscreen cinema and since the closure of Somerfield in 2007 has been without a town centre supermarket. This development will address both of those shortages while the addition of new restaurants and a hotel will create a thriving town centre for visitors to enjoy during the day as well as long into the evening.”