Listening to Argent last week at the Spring meeting of the Reading Real Estate Network was inspiring.

Argent is generally recognised as best in class when it comes to the UK development community. Originally led by the irrepressible Roger Madelin with David Partridge, but now just Mr Partridge, Argent recognises that it is in the business of not just development (whether it be offices, retail or residential) but increasingly, the world of entertainment.

Argent is brilliant at creating spaces which excite and produce memories for the people who occupy their offices. Just look at King’s Cross, Brindley Place, Manchester’s Piccadilly Circus schemes. All are places designed to attract people to stay a while and be entertained.

Let’s hope that this simple but actually very subtle development principle is grasped as the £750 million development space ship called Station Hill arrives in Reading.

If they want any clues, maybe the developers should take a quick look at Forbury Square or Green Park (Phase1) which were of course Argent-led schemes. What goes around, comes around.

© Thames Valley Property No 197 (