A NEW gift and gadget store is opening in York in another boost for the city’s retail scene.
Popular national retailer Menkind is creating a number of new jobs with the launch of its latest store in Coney Street.
The business, which is due to open this month, stocks items ranging from licensed products to personalised items and the latest tech.
Menkind has taken 2,610 sq ft of space at the premises at 29-31 Coney Street, owned by property specialist Helmsley Group.
It takes the place of the pop-up art gallery which opened in the former ex-Dorothy Perkins/Burtons shop store last December and showcased the work of York artists.
The Press reported at the time that arts charity Skippko had agreed a 12-18 month lease on the property from its new owners, Helmsley Group.
The former fashion store had lain empty and boarded up in York city centre for more than a year until then.
Vince Dank, pictured with some of his works at the pop-up gallery in the former Dorothy Perkins store in Coney Street Picture: Mike Laycock
The arrival of Menkind follows Helmsley Group’s recent deal with The American Candy Company, part of US confectionery giant Tootsie Roll Industries, which launched in Coney Street in August.
The American Candy Company has agreed an initial short-term lease on the 3,246 sq ft former Poundland shop.
George Baines, asset manager at Helmsley Group, said: “Menkind and The American Candy Company both taking space on Coney Street is a brilliant boost for the city centre, with a number of new jobs being created through these openings.
“As a proud York-based business we’re committed to helping the city to prosper now and in the future, and these lettings are further examples of the positive renaissance of Coney Street.
“We continue to work collaboratively with investors and stakeholders in taking proactive steps to help cement a positive future for retail alongside creating resilient high streets for the future in York and across the region.”
Mark Talbot, director at Menkind, said: “We have continued to enjoy positive trading despite the Covid-19 pandemic. This latest store opening in York’s popular Coney Street forms part of our ongoing strategy of selecting high footfall, strong trading locations for our stores.
“We are delighted to be opening in York and are really excited to welcome people to our new Coney Street store.”
Both lettings follow York-based Helmsley’s recent acquisition of units three to seven on Coney Street and form part of its ongoing strategy to invest in the area for the benefit of the wider city and economy.
Helmsley has been investing in Coney Street for several years, following the purchase of units 39-43, which are currently let to Boots and W H Smith, reinforcing the property specialist’s commitment to York’s famous high street.
Units three to seven, whose current occupiers include JD Sports, Lush, Mango, and the vacant unit previously occupied by Joe’s Kitchen, were recently purchased by Helmsley off market for an undisclosed sum from M&G, the London-based asset management company.
Helmsley also recently acquired the unit housing Ernest Jones.
Steve Henderson, director at property agency Savills, and James Bradley, of law firm Langleys, acted for Helmsley on both the Menkind and The American Candy Company lettings.
Mr Henderson said: “It’s great to see these well-known brands opening in the heart of York’s retail core in Coney Street. As more and more people return to the city centre, I’m sure both The American Candy Company and Menkind will prove popular destinations for people of all ages over the coming months.”