A BOUTIQUE retail, leisure and business space in the grounds of a 15th century estate is facing an exciting future thanks to a major deal brokered by  Innes England. 

Nestled in beautiful countryside just three miles from Leicester city centre, Stoughton Grange Rural Centre offers an inspirational and creative alternative environment to shop, work and relax in.   

Home to a variety of businesses – including the renowned Cow and Plough public inn – the centre has grown substantially thanks to the work of Innes England since it was first instructed in 2016. 

The consultants have overseen major site improvements to benefit current and new tenants, resulting in a fully tenanted site with a rent roll that has more than tripled. 

Now the team has successfully secured a multi-million-pound sale of the site on behalf of The Co-operative Group, which owned it for more than a century. 

Matt Howson, Innes England director involved with property asset management and who oversaw the sale, explained: “When we took over the management in 2016, we had a clear remit with our client, the Co-operative Group, to really improve Stoughton Grange Rural Centre through pro-active asset management.

“The aim was to improve the tenant mix, increase the rent roll and ultimately have a fully tenanted and functional site.”

Just four of the 20 units were let when Innes England first became involved. Now, through Matt’s asset management and the client’s investment, the site is home to a mix of good quality tenants and has gone from strength to strength.

Matt added: “We have gone above and beyond all the targets that we set out to achieve in 2016 and the site now provides a great working environment for all our tenants and their visitors.” 

During its 600-year history, the site has passed through royal hands and been privately owned. The remains of the original Stoughton Grange are nearby, having been bought as part of the estate by the Co-operative Wholesale Society Ltd – now the Co-operative Group – in 1919. By 1954, the Co-op farmed more than 4,600 acres of land, focused on milk production. Several farm buildings were since converted to create the rural centre. 

The sale of the site has been a major success for Matt and the asset management team at Innes England. The firm is skilled in looking after the complete lifecycle of a property through its range of expertise, with other departments including professional services, agency teams and building consultancy.

The new buyers of Stoughton Grange have been so impressed by the site’s growth that they have appointed Innes England to continue managing it. They have several plans in the pipeline, including the construction of a farm shop and distillery in 2022.   

“They have been impressed by the quality of the businesses in there, its popularity with visitors and shoppers and, of course, with its incredible history,” Matt added. “They are excited to be part of this local success story and to really bring out the site’s potential. The future of Stoughton Grange is in great hands and I look forward to the next phase of its history.”  

Rob Bignold, head of special assets at the Co-operative Group, said: “Matt and the team at Innes England have been instrumental in getting this deal over the line, going above and beyond to deliver, so a huge thanks goes to them. There were some complex negotiations which Matt and the wider team of consultants guided us through, and we are thrilled with the result.  

“This would not have been possible without the hard work, dedication and endeavour that they have put into this site since 2016 and this is a real success story. We wish the new owners, with Innes England acting for them, the best of luck for the future.”

 Find out more at, or join the conversation @innesengland