Plans to extend Elliott's Field Retail Park in Rugby, Warwickshire, have moved a step closer after the project was granted approval.

Hammerson submitted an application to Rugby Borough Council to expand and redevelop the facility with investment of up to £35 million. Councillors voted with overwhelming support for the work which is designed to provide a significant boost to town's commercial offerings. Hammerson is now expected to negotiate with selected contractors to take over the main construction process.

The approved plans include a new 5,600 m sq Debenhams which will form the focal point of the redevelopment. There will be scope for a retail terrace designed to create additional space for fashion and homeware brands. Officials at Hammerson stated that the scheme will be able to implement drastic improvement to the external environment while there will also be the delivery of new catering space.

Work is expected to begin in early 2014 with a completion date penned for spring 2015. Hammerson stated that the new stores will be ready for trading by the end of this timeframe.

Tom Cochrane, Hammerson asset manager, said: "This is a great result for the borough and Elliott's Field will play an important role in its future economic growth. By improving Rugby's retail offer there will be more incentive for people to shop locally and the whole town will benefit as a result."

Elliott's Field retail park sits two miles outside of Rugby town centre and provide easy access for passing motorists with key links to the M6. The facility consists of 11 units including shops such as Next, TK Maxx and Homebase. Hammerson currently owns 100 per cent of the development and once the Debenhams store and expansion is complete it is expected to bring more people into the area to indulge in some retail.

It will also help Rugby to compete with some of the larger towns and cities in both in Warwickshire and the Midlands area further afield.

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