Business boss gives his backing to Gunwharf regeneration

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From Toys R’ Us to Toys R’ Bust - City store to close today

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THE manager of a business whose premises could face demolition has said he supports the regeneration of Portsmouth’s Hard.

Tony Jefferson runs City Wide Taxis which backs on to Brunel House – an eyesore tower block which is in the process of being sold to a development firm.

As reported previously in The News, the sale of his business, the Victory pub and a nearby garage are also being negotiated as part of the same deal.

However Mr Jefferson said he has had no contact with the owners of the land – who have remained anonymous but are believed to be a London family firm – for years.

‘The last time I spoke to them was four or five years ago,’ he said. ‘There was talk of a deal before the recession but it came to nothing.

‘But I have no doubt that one day this land will have to be sold so the area can be redeveloped.

‘And even I have to admit that Brunel House is a complete eyesore.’

Mr Jefferson added that he was excited about the prospects for a regeneration of the area after Land Securities – the retail property giant which owns Gunwharf Quays – bought the former headquarters of Pall Europe, Europa House.

‘I will be fascinated to see what they do with it,’ he said. ‘I fully support the Hard being given a proper overhaul, it will be good for the city.

‘But I’m not holding my breath and expecting it soon, we still have years to go on our lease so at some point the owners of this land will have to talk to us, unless this deal falls through as well.’