Hull City Hits It Big: A Sporting Triumph

the tigersThe team at Clark Weightman are in high spirits following Hull City’s marvellous win at Wembley on Saturday. In case you’d missed the news, the team won the match against Yorkshire rivals Sheffield Wednesday with a righteous score of 1-0; hailed as a ‘wonder goal’ by manager Steve Bruce, Mo Diame’s goal came just in time on the 72nd minute. Hull City’s promotion came hot on the heels of Grimsby Town’s successful securing promotion to Football League Two. For those of you with short memories, it’s not that long ago that Grimsby were flirting with promotion to the top leagues whilst Hull City were locked out of their ground and playing lower league football. How times change.

According to the press, this win will land the ‘Tigers’ a mighty £170 million – a certified place in the next Premier League this coming August. Better yet for Hull’s economy, should the team’s performance persist over the coming season, the club’s revenue is likely to approach double the aforementioned figure (at least according to Deloitte, who are usually rather good with this sort of thing!).

grimsby townAs grand as this news may be, we’d do well not to forget the equally triumphant Hull Ionians RUFC who have secured themselves National League 1 status; this is a huge achievement for a team this size. We also look forward to cheering The I’s on again next season – our advertising hoarding sits proudly along the half way line. Then you’ve got the inimitable Hull F.C. who continue to top the Super League! Good stuff all round…

Last but not least, North Ferriby United are celebrating having sealed promotion to National League! It’s by no means hyperbole when we say that the local sport scene of late has raised the spirits and hope of the community. We simply can’t wait to see where the coming months take Hull and all the local clubs involved in spreading our name and talent! Here’s to a cracking Premier League!

How do you feel about the regions latest sporting headlines? Let the Clark Weightman team know on Facebook and Twitter.

Pre-Emptive Brexit Blues – A Level Headed Approach

euWhip out the calendars (or load up your phones we should say) and get that date jotted in – 23rd June 2016 – it’s nearly time for the big one. The team at Clark Weightman have been keeping a keen eye on the ‘Brexit’ developments for some time, and it’s fascinating to see how diverse the response has been. Of course, for the sake of unbiased clarity we are going to keep our personal views reserved – a decision we share with our professional body, RICS, who are maintaining a neutral position.  We feel the most pressing issue to cover is how the result would affect the property market, and in our case particularly – commercial property.

Since the referendum began infiltrating peoples’ everyday conscience, a tangible number of investors have evidently taken a step back to await the results. The same behaviour could be seen in the lead up to the Scottish referendum in 2014 – a political tear which divided the country by a near 50/50 split. A number of people in the property sector have warned that the lead up to Brexit could be more damaging than anything post-vote due to the drop off in foreign and national investment.

european-union-1328255_960_720On one hand you have the FT reporting that “London office investment” has dropped by 52% as well as Band of England governor Mark Carney warning that problems within the market, trade deficit, and company performance are beginning to manifest. There are of course those taking a level-headed approach and offering a ‘wait and see’ mentality to counter anxiety and negativity. Property analyst Richard Donnell says “If we vote to stay in, it’ll be back to business relatively quickly” as well as offering a comforting notion that he can’t see “long-term fundamentals shifting” as a result of Brexit because property prices are “largely informed by people’s incomes”.

We are very mindful of the significant investment the renewable sector plays in our region – for example, both Siemens and Dong Energy act as major players in our local economy. Similarly with the sheer volume of business trading through the Humber ports, we can’t lose sight of the significance our European neighbours lend to our wealth and prosperity.  That said we hear and understand the arguments over sovereignty and decision making.

We remain concerned that the Brexit debate will turn into a personality contest between the main protagonists and that the decision to vote yes or no will be based on personality rather than facts.  This isn’t a high stakes version of Britain’s Got Talent.

At Clark Weightman, we await with baited breath. What do you think of Brexit and how has it affected your perception of the commercial property market? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter.

Does Grimsby Deserve It’s Questionable Fame?

As you may have noticed, satirical character actor Sasha Baron Cohen has struck box office gold by taking aim at the North East town and former fishing capital of England – Grimsby.

Mr Cohen is no stranger to dealing with divisive subject matter; the man has arguably made a living from successfully blending low brow comedy with subtle yet potent social satire, an approach which in Borats’ case proved a worldwide phenomenon. So here we are in 2016 and the Clark Weightman team look onward at the marketing for Grimsby, slightly baffled by how our endearing town became the subject of a blockbuster comedy.

Critical response to the film so far has been mixed, but that was always going to happen with a film that uses cultural stereotypes as an excuse for laughs. As for local residents, take a look at this feature on The Guardian which compiles the opinions of local Grimsby residents who have seen the film (spoiler: some actually loved it).

Anyway, rather than let Cohen’s depiction of Grimsby soil public perception, we’re fighting back and highlighting the cultural treasures of this wonderful town.

This website is a great source for information on the surrounding areas and offers an insightful look at the economic and cultural riches on offer in North East Lincolnshire. We recommend exploring their online brochure and the following pages:

  1. Cultural Days
  2. Leisure Time
  3. Events
  4. Work

Invest NEL offers a rich source of opportunity listings for investors, businesses and visitors. They have also kindly compiled some key facts about the local area that are all too often glazed over in mainstream press:

North East Lincolnshire lays claim to

  • the busiest port complex
  • the largest concentration of food companies
  • fantastic renewable energy opportunities
  • large strategic employment sites
  • the lowest operating costs

The team at Clark Weightman would also love to hear your opinion on Grimsby and your favourite things about the town.

You can find us on Facebook and Twitter.


photo (3)I always sit down on the first of the month and have a look back at the number of new jobs which came in during the previous month. How many viewings we had at the properties we are marketing and how busy the traffic has been to our website.  I have to be honest.  May was a little disappointing.  Then I stopped to think about May, we had two bank holidays, half term…and a general election.

By the time the election arrived I think if we all tell the truth we were probably a bit fed up with the whole thing.  We have some incredibly bright and talented politicians in this country, but somehow the bickering and petty point scoring seems to overshadow the debate and issues of great importance.  In the run up to the election business seemed to throttle back a little, everyone was a little more cautious, people were nervously wondering what the outcome would be.  In reality everyone was expecting another hung parliament, but would it be a conservative led coalition or some other wonderful concoction of parties trying to work together in an attempt to seize power remained to be seen.

Whatever your political persuasion (and no offence to my friends who have emigrated to England from north of the border) I didn’t fancy waking up on the 8th May to find that Mc Milliballs was running the country!  UKIP’s candidate for Grimsby continues to make me smile.  Her ill-fated comment about renewable energy running out will stay with me forever. I guess if the wind stops blowing and the sun stops shining then frankly we are all doomed, not just the renewable industry.  It came as a huge relief to watch Jeremy Vine’s path to Downing Street turn blue on Friday morning.  I have to admit I didn’t get much work done as I watched the BBC news coverage of the result on Friday morning on my iPad.  Then came the resignations, Clegg, Milliband and Farage all in close succession.  The face of British politics changes once again.

What has been evident is that business wanted a winner, they wanted certainty.  We know what we’ve got, we know who is in charge and we can now get back to business and plan accordingly.  This is certainly evident in the commercial property market in the Humber region where this week alone we have seen an unprecedented number of viewings on all manner of properties.  I’m confident that these viewings will convert to offers and in turn convert to completed transactions.  After all that is what we’re about.

There is a real buzz about Business in the Humber this week.  Congratulations to all those involved in the organisation and promotion of Business Week.  Due to a rather full diary I’ve only managed to attend two events. An excellent presentation by Tim Wigglesworth on “Managing from the middle” – how his skills as a top level rugby referee can be applied in business. The Chamber of Commerce lunch was also excellent. Martin Green spoke passionately about Hull City of Culture. He is very engaging and has a proven track record.  I’m confident City of Culture will be a huge success and I’m looking forward to inviting friends and clients to Hull in 2017 to soak up what the city has to offer.  But let’s not forget the wonderful Monty Python Sketch – there’s more to life than culture!

Carl Bradley

Grimsby is healthier than you think!


Grimsby High Street

Yet another survey has emerged highlighting the good and bad places to live in the UK. This time the Royal Society for Public Health has drawn up a league table of the unhealthiest high streets in the UK and oddly enough Grimsby is ranked No 7.  It could be worse I could be from Preston seeing as they hold the dubious honour of being in first place.

So what constitutes an “unhealthy” high street?  According to the RSPH it is determined by the types of businesses that are on the high street.  Bookmakers, loan shops, tanning salons and fast food outlets are viewed as having a negative impact on public health with the society calling for a 5% limit of each “unhealthy” type of business to avoid saturation. The league table was drawn up based on a scoring system (which presumably only the report’s authors will understand) with businesses promoting healthy choices, social interaction and promoting positive mental well-being receiving the highest rank.

I can hear the arguments, but frankly the demand for retail premises has fallen significantly over the last 10 years, not just as a result of the recession, but as a result of the way in which the Great British public changed their shopping habits.  I for one would much rather see a property occupied by a betting shop than remaining boarded up and derelict.

grimsby dock

Grimsby Dock

It’s a shame that the report’s authors weren’t at the recent launch of Discover NEL.  A promotion of all that is good about North East Lincolnshire and the local authority area of which Grimsby forms a significant part. The event was held at the Humber Royal Hotel at the beginning of March (my invitation arrived safely, thank you). The event was well attended by representatives from business and the public sector and felt like a genuine celebration of all that is good about the community.  Discover NEL was delivered by an eclectic group of people representing Visitor Economy, Services and the Retail sectors in North East Lincolnshire.  There are some fantastic employment opportunities as a result of the growth of off shore industries, some wonderful housing opportunities, education and leisure. The beautiful Lincolnshire Wolds are only a few minutes away.


Humber Royal Hotel

So next time someone mentions an unhealthy high street, think about the big name brands in the hugely successful Freshney Place shopping centre, some of the amazing independent boutiques in Abbeygate, old established family businesses with a modern twist such as Hewitts and if you’re after something to eat and drink then try Abbeys. Fantastic accommodation ranging from cosy B&B’s to modern chains.  Grimsby really is healthier than you’ve been led to believe.

Take a few minutes and have a look at – it will be time well spent.

Oh, and if you are interested Britain’s Healthiest high street is in Shrewsbury. Now where exactly is Shrewsbury anyway…

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Monopolise Grimsby? Yes please!

monopolyI read with interest that the makers of Monopoly are going to be introducing a Grimsby Edition, hopefully to be launched in time for Christmas (I’ve started my Christmas list early this year) and they are inviting ideas for what should be included.  I will be sending them a link to this blog!

My mind scans all of the properties I have sold over the last 20+ years and I’ve come up with four buildings that I think should be included plus one (it’s not exactly a building, but more on that later) that I would love to get the job of selling.

I suspect readers may be surprised by my choices, but there is a logical reason for each and every one of them.

  1. Croft Baker Maternity Home as it once was

    Croft Baker Maternity Home as it once was

    Albemarle House on Mill Road in Cleethorpes.  Many people will not realise that Mill Road is a conservation area with some lovely old houses.  The neighbouring property is Croft Baker – once a maternity home and my place of birth.  Albemarle House has long since been converted in to apartments, but the reason for its inclusion in my list is it’s connection to the fishing industry and the person who it was built for.  The house dates back to the early 1920’s although is of an Edwardian style.  I remember being taught by the late Rex Critchlow that many houses in Grimsby and Cleethorpes look older than they really are.  Travel was limited in those days, but when the wealthy travelled they liked what they saw and copied the designs later.  It was built for the Osborne family, big players in the fishing industry.  Osborne Street in Grimsby, where I had an office for many years, is named after the family.  The amazing thing though about this house is there is a turret on the rear elevation which is straight in line with Grimsby’s dock tower.  Story has it that is was designed this way so that Mr Osborne could sit at home and with the aid of a telescope watch boats coming in and out of the docks.


  1. art-deco-lincolnshireThe Electricity Showroom on Grimsby Road in Cleethorpes.  I sold this building on behalf of The Yorkshire Electricity Board.  It is a fabulous art deco style building dating from 1937 (again it looks older than it really is) and was designed and built by Leonard Pye who at the time was the Borough Engineer and Architect for Cleethorpes Borough Electricity Committee.  It is described as being one of the best surviving examples of art deco architecture in the Humber Region.  I don’t know what it is like inside now, but at the time it had a magnificent staircase, a timber panelled lift shaft, stain glassed windows and really elaborate urinals.  I remember one of the local TV news programmes picking up on the sale and doing a feature which included footage of the toilets.  I still have the video at home somewhere (but no vcr to watch it on!)


  1. Old Courthouse MainBrighowgate Courthouse, Grimsby.  This is a more recent sale and now the home to Bates and Mountain solicitors.  My client bought the building from the council and refurbished it to a high standard, respecting it’s listed building status, with the property still retaining some wonderful wood panelling, tiling, parquet floors and radiators.  The judge’s bench is still in situ.  It was an obvious building for a solicitor to buy, prominent, close to the town centre, full of character and with a car park.  I remember organising an open afternoon and inviting every firm of solicitors in the town to come and have a look round – we had a really busy afternoon.  Eventually the firm that decided to buy it didn’t come around till a good few weeks later, oh the irony!


  1. WonderlandWonderland, Cleethorpes.  This is my most recent sale of all of the buildings listed.  The building itself if frankly awful, a steel frame with uninspiring cladding to the walls.  The view from the railway line to the rear of the property was even less attractive when I went on the train from Cleethorpes last summer.  I suspect it hasn’t improved but this isn’t about the building, it’s what it stands for that matters here.  As a teenager it was a Friday evening treat to go in to Cleethorpes with a group of school friends to go to Wonderland with the dodgem cars, waltzers and other amusements.  It was part of growing up and more recently it was a thriving Sunday market.  They used to run bus trips from Sheffield, Barnsley, Rotherham etc to Cleethorpes just so that people could go shopping on the market.  Those days have gone now, but good luck to those individuals and businesses who are looking to regenerate the sea-front area, I sincerely hope they are hugely successful.


  1. blundellAnd finally, the building (well it’s not a building it’s a home) that I would dearly love to sell, is Blundell Park, the home to Grimsby Town FC.  Why?  Because if it is time to sell, it means that the dream that The Mariners move to a new stadium has finally come alive.  If the new stadium is actually in Grimsby it means that GTFC will at last play their games at “home” instead of in Cleethorpes.  I’ve spent many hours at Blundell Park over the years, not all of them happy ones (relegation parties aren’t actually that much fun).  My first match with my grandfather was stood in the Harrington Street open corner, we then spent a few seasons in the Barratt Stand, going to the last game against West Ham (we lost) before it was pulled down.   I then graduated to The Pontoon a particular highlight being the 0-0 draw against Chelsea (Dennis Wise, Ruud Gullit and all) in the FA Cup.  It was the ground that lead to me going to Wembley twice in the same season (not many “big” clubs can boast that).  So when the games makers get round to including Blundell Park on the monopoly board it will be interesting to see what price they put on it!

I’m looking forward to Christmas day already!

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CarlThe consensus is that the commercial property market gathered momentum during 2014.  We at Clark Weightman share that view having seen a phenomenal number of contracts close in the second half of the year compared to the steady but uninspired first. At the close of business in December we also had more deals with solicitors than at any other time during the year.  Furthermore we saw a steady increase in the number of valuation instructions from banks during the course of the year which gave us the confidence to expand the business with the recruitment of another surveyor to carry out the bank valuation work.  Emma Bennett (pictured to the left) joined us in the autumn and has been kept busy since her first day with us.

emma bennettThe national press always like to speculate about interest rates, but the smart money seems to be that interest rates will remain unchanged in the short term, with some commentators suggesting that rates will not increase until 2017 and then by only a small margin.  This is good news for borrowers as the low cost of money and a degree of certainty as to how long rates will remain stable for is good for businesses who carry any level of debt.  It’s bad news for savers though, but this is where the property market can benefit in that investors may look to release their cash from low interest rate deposit accounts and invest their money in bricks and mortar instead which will generate a higher return.

siemens projectThe economy continues to grow.  The importance of Grimsby and Hull within the renewable industry continues to gather momentum and today is particularly significant in Hull as work officially starts on the Siemens Green Port Hull Project.  This is set to create a 1,000 new jobs in the city and along with the Siemens investment there will be significant investment in the city from the construction industry and Siemens supply chain.  We mustn’t forget that there has already been significant investment in Grimsby within this sector with more to follow.

yorkshireAnd finally,  the route for the Tour de Yorkshire was announced yesterday.  This follows on from the success of the Grande Depart last year, with some of the worlds top cyclists and teams hitting the Yorkshire roads at the beginning of May.  It’s even more exciting this year as some significant mileage will be covered on East Yorkshire’s roads.  The momentum from last year’s Le Tour continues.  It will bring many visitors into our region, not forgetting the huge TV audience.  I’m disappointed that the Humber Bridge isn’t on the route, but you can’t have everything.  When you look how the communities embraced the tour last year it promises to be a fantastic event on our very own doorstep.

To conclude, we have momentum, let that continue to make 2015 a momentous year!

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My Lapland, Carl Bradley reflects on a wonderful day

photoWednesday morning, 2.30am, and my alarm is ringing on the opposite side of the bedroom. I have to get up to switch it off. Quick shower and a banana before heading off to Humberside airport. Passport – check, warm clothes – check, it’s the day of the When You Wish Upon A Star Lapland Flight.

This was to be my 16th Lapland. Each trip is different, each is magical. We’ve got a brilliant group of “team leaders” who help make the day happen.

As I arrived at the airport some of the families were already there, others arriving. The Lapland trip is a magical day in the Charity’s calendar, we take around 90 children to Lapland to see Father Christmas. Every child has their own story to tell. Every child is on the trip for a reason. All have terminal, lifelong or life limiting illnesses, but the trip is a day when all of this can be put to one side, and is a day for smiles and laughter.

Once the aircraft is boarded we taxi on to the run way for the pilot to come over the PA system and start a countdown 5,4, 3,2, 1 blast-off before the engines fire up and we hurtle down the runway for take-off. There’s no in-flight movie and instead we have a magician, balloon modelling and a sing a long led by Kammy (Chris Kamara) – this flight is “unbelievable”.
About half an hour from landing we all start to put on our warm clothing. On landing it’s a mild -4, warm by Laplands standards. We head to the forest where we are greeted by woodland creatures and our hosts dressed in traditional Lappish clothes. There is a wonderful BBQ with hot sausages, a fire to toast marshmallows and the most wonderful hot chocolate. The children head off in different directions and have the most wonderful time on Husky rides, Reindeer sleighs, Skidoos and toboggans. We can all enjoy ourselves safe in the knowledge that there is an expert medical team on hand just in case any of the children need some support on the day.

There is only a couple of hours of daylight in Lapland and the light soon starts to fail as a firework display tells us it’s time to get back on the coaches and head to a hotel for lunch.

After a scrumptious hot buffet we then start to sing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer in the hope that Father Christmas will hear the singing and bring presents for the children. Our celebrity guests and aircrew take centre stage to lead the singing and in a short space of time the big man himself is seen walking past the hotel with Rudolph. The children’s eyes are wide open with excitement, some of the grown-ups discreetly wipe away a tear, Rudolph is made to wait outside (past experience says he is not yet fully house-trained) and one by one the children meet Father Christmas, share the secrets of what presents they want, confirm they have been good and leave their letters. Hopefully some of the children put in a good word for the team leaders – no doubt I will find out in a couple of weeks! Father Christmas leaves all the children with a gift before leaving with a jolly ho ho ho!

We then head off to Santa’s Village, a magical little spot where it’s possible to visit his post office, play on ice slides and cross in to the Arctic circle.

It’s then back to the airport for theflight home. There are lot of tired people on the flight, but the party continues. On arrival back at Humberside there are carol singers and presents for the children.

Quote of the day for me was from Kate, a truly wonderful young person, who summed it all up in one sentence “Lapland is epic!” Too right, it’s an honour and a privilege to be a team leader on this trip. All I can say to Kate and the other children and their families is thank you for letting me be a part of your magical day. May the memories live on forever. There will be days out there that will be tough for these families, but if I’ve helped make a difference I’m grateful for the opportunity to have been able to do it.

Finally we are blessed with the skill and dedication of Gary Payne who takes a record breaking number of photographs each year and truly captures the excitement and spirit of the day. I appreciate everyone is busy but take a few minutes out of your day and have a look at where you too can share in the magic that is the When You Wish Upon A Star Lapland trip.

Carl Bradley

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Simon celebrates a prestigious nomination


On 20th November 2014, Clark Weightman were invited to the National General Practice Awards Dinner at the Lancaster Hotel in London.  Clark Weightman were nominated for the award “Property Advisers of the Year” and were successfully shortlisted as finalists as one of the best three companies for this national award.  The other finalists were national firms of Chartered Surveyors with offices in London and the regions.

Simon Weightman, the Clark Weightman Director who heads up the Healthcare Consultancy side of the business, was among 700 guests from the medical profession and their professional teams and was awarded a Certificate of Recognition for being one of the finalists on the night.   Simon has over 25 years experience in this sector.

The General Practice Awards Dinner presented various awards on the night including the best GP Practice in the country and the Best Practice Manager of a GP Practice in the country.  This was the only property related award and relates to the advice given to GP Practices and the NHS.

Clark Weightman Director, Simon Weightman, said “it was an honour and privilege to be nominated for such a prestigious award.  Over the last 15 years we have built a wide client base across the medical sector and have been involved in a number of high profile projects not just locally but also on a national basis and I am very proud that our work within the healthcare sector has been recognised”.

For further information please contact Simon Weightman on 01482 645522.

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Carl Bradley’s Pall Mall Adventure

CarlA damp and misty start to the day this morning as I head down to London for the Property Agents Independent Partners Conference and Cocktail Party.

The conference and cocktail party are taking place at the prestigious Royal Automobile Club on Pall Mall.

I have to admit to being slightly nervous as I’m giving a short presentation on how we can use Social Media to promote the organisation.  I’m more of an enthusiast than an expert, but I’m well prepared and provided the technology behaves itself it will be quite interactive.

PAI as an organisation is celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year.  It’s a great organisation.  50 years on we have 27 member firms across the whole of the UK with over 200 surveyors providing commercial property advice to clients.  All of the member firms are independently owned and run.  Our USP is our detailed knowledge of the local and regional market places in which each firm operates.  Clark Weightman are the members for East Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire.  We work with our fellow members if they need to provide commercial property advice to their clients in our area and likewise if one of our clients needs assistance in a town or city that we are not 100% familiar with we can call upon the member local to that area to assist us.

We’ve recently worked with  one of the other members on an office requirement in Hull as part of national charity’s property requirements.

I am a member of PAI’s national marketing group.  We have a two tier strategy.  Firstly to promote the use of PAI through our member firms and secondly to promote the PAI brand across the UK property market.  For a business with properties across the whole of the UK PAI should be the natural alternative to using one of the national surveying firms, who will not have the indepth local and regional knowledge that the PAI member firms can provide.

For more information about PAI and the services we can provide please give me a call or visit

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The newly launched Property Agents Independent newsletter can be read online now – November issue available here.


Clark Weightman Chartered Surveyors and Commercial Property Consultants operating in Kingston upon Hull, Beverley, Brigg, Barton, Hessle, Bridlington, Grimsby, Cleethorpes, Immingham, Scunthorpe, Doncaster, Louth, Lincoln, Gainsborough, Driffield


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Telephone: 01482 645522
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