The UK's two biggest property companies will sell about £750 million worth of retail assets within weeks as they try to pay off debts.

It is understood that British Land is close to selling a 50 per cent stake in the Meadowhall shopping centre, Sheffield, for about £550 million to a joint venture between an Abu Dhabi fund and the AIM-listed London & Stamford.

Land Securities is nearing completion of a deal to offload a one-third stake in the Bullring shopping centre in Birmingham, to an Australian fund for £200 million. The deal could be completed by the end of next week.

British Land and Land Securities are both selling assets at substantially lower prices than they would have commanded 18 months ago, as their debt burden becomes larger.

The Times, Daily Telegraph