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One Year on Grey Street

Mon 7 December 2020

“It has been a year since we moved our commercial property office onto Grey Street, and what a strange year it’s been! We only had four months of ‘business as usual’ before the country went into lockdown in March. Before that, however, we were able to establish our commercial property and planning teams on the first and second floors of our new home at 23 Grey Street. This move has raised the profile of the commercial department and with the merging of the commercial and planning teams, together with the appointment of Chris Dixon as business development consultant, staff numbers at Newcastle have increased to ten. 

The office has remained open throughout the year, with a core team who cannot work from home maintaining a presence and being available to take all enquiries. the rest of the staff have successfully worked from home. Property management work is very busy at the moment, and there are always issues to be addressed.

The market has remained remarkably buoyant in most commercial sectors, and throughout the summer and early autumn, we have progressed a high number of sales and lettings. At times like this, agents need to be imaginative and pro-active in their marketing and negotiation approach. Whilst some of our competitors have furloughed staff and/or gone down the redundancy route, all our fee earning members of staff at Newcastle have continued to work throughout the year, simply due to the volume of ongoing and new instructions. 

The company’s recent investment in IT has certainly paid off. With our enhanced telephone systems, all surveyors are contactable at all times wherever we are working, and all staff have access to data and files remotely, via our cloud-based document management software. 

Throughout the year, all staff have kept in touch with each other, with regular team meetings on video conferencing platforms. These have also been used to great effect for meetings with clients, and whilst it is always good to meet in person, I believe when restrictions are lifted, we will all continue to conduct many of our client meetings by video conference link. This way of connecting has now been extended to include social or business development virtual meetings. 

Newcastle city centre has understandably been quieter this year, with COVID-19 restrictions in place, but Grey Street remains at the core of the city’s commercial and hospitality activities. This summer, we have seen the implementation of phase one of the City Council’s plans to improve the public realm of Grey Street, to transform the street into a more people friendly area, with less traffic and safer cycling, and to create pavement cafés and space for social distancing. 

A year to remember for many reasons. Despite restrictions, we continue to offer our full range of commercial property and planning services from our new home on Grey Street. For more information about the services we offer, please get in touch.”

Michael Blake | michael.blake@youngsrps.com

To read more from our latest edition of Insight Magazine, click here.