Manchester’s Trafford Centre prepares for a £4.5m Nerf laser combat attraction

Plans have been put in place to launch the first official Nerf Action Experience attraction in Manchester’s Trafford Centre shopping destination through a partnership between Hasbro and Rocafella Leisure Group.

The £4.5 million attraction will mark the first of its kind Britain, mirroring a similar attraction already open in Singapore called Nerf Xperience. The news has been reported following plans to change 25,000 square feet of units at Barton Square were placed with Trafford Council.

According to Manchester Evening News, the application reveals that three first floor units will be combined to create the space to accommodate the adventure attraction. A 4,000 sq ft mezzanine floor is also planned, with room for a café and a viewing platform.

The application states that Nerf is a ‘family entertainment leisure experience, incorporating laser guns and virtual interactions and is a market leading attraction with 20 attractions across Europe’.

“Nerf’s occupancy at Barton Square will be their first UK destination,” it adds.

It is expected that the new Nerf Action Xperience will create somewhere around 50 new jobs.

Word of the partnership between Hasbro and Rocafella Leisure Group was first announced when the event company’s chief operating officer issued a social media statement detailing the launch of the experience at the Trafford Centre “in early 2021.”

“Taking UK family Entertainment Centres top the next level with the first of its kind. A huge thank you to @Hasbro and their dedicated team,” he said.

UK shopping centre owner Intu says it’s on the verge of appointing administrators

The UK shopping centre owner, Intu has indicated it is on the verge of appointing administrators after discussions with its creditors were stalled.

The struggling business had been hamstrung by a $4.5bn debt over the past year, but in recent weeks and months has been hammered by the impact of COVID-19 and the significantly lower rent payments from retail tenants.

Sky News reports that should Intu fall into administration, it would arguably mark the biggest corporate casualty of the coronavirus pandemic. Intu is the owner of shopping centres across the country, including Manchester’s Trafford Centre and Lakeside in Essex.

The company directly employs nearly 3,000 people, with a further 102,000 people working in its 17 UK shopping centres. Another 30,000 people work in Intu’s broader supply chain.

The firm has said it had been in talks with creditors to try and seek standstill arrangements, but that “unfortunately, insufficient alignment and agreement has been achieved on such terms. The board is therefore considering the position of Intu with a view to protecting the interests of its stakeholders.”