Liberty International subsidiary Capital & Counties and North West developer Merepark have bought Liverpool’s 420,000 sq ft Lewis Building.

The building, which was the first and only remaining Lewis’s department store, will now be redeveloped as a part of the joint venture’s Central Village scheme.

Planning permission will be submitted in December for the redevelopment of the nine-storey, grade II listed building at Ranelagh Street.

Another Merepark joint venture with Ballymore, the Central Regeneration Partnership, has bought The Watson Building next door which will also contribute to the Central Village scheme.

‘These are two highly strategic acquisitions which will enable us to deliver a full regeneration programme for Central Village and integrate two very prominent sites into the fabric of the city,’ said Merepark director, Richard Peel.


Lewis’s, which still trades, was the first store in a chain that went into liquidation in February this year.

The building, which opened its doors in 1856, was then bought by Vergo Retail.

Lewis’s will still be allowed to trade through the construction process and Merepark said it will ensure some of the characteristic features, like a famous Jacob Epstein statue, are preserved.