The Grade II-listed Hallmark House, one of Bradford’s most iconic buildings, has been sold for £6.5 million.
The purchaser is The Investment Room, the Yorkshire-based residential property investor.
The sale of the 8.76 acre site was brokered by leading Yorkshire property consultancy Dove Haigh Phillips.
It follows the relocation of Hallmark Cards from Hallmark House to its sister site at Dawson Lane in south Bradford, with the company’s 500 staff.
Hallmark House, an historic Art Deco 76,207 sq ft building, was built in 1937 and extensively refurbished in 2001. In addition to the house itself, 3.3 acres was included in its sale.
The Investment Room is planning to build between 150 and 200 units on the site, both in Hallmark House itself and an adjacent warehouse, together with a new-build development.
Simon Dove, partner with Dove Haigh Phillips, who are marketing the properties, said: “This was an excellent opportunity for a residential development in the heart of West Yorkshire, which is reflected in the healthy sale price.
“Hallmark House is a stunning four-storey property on the edge of Airedale, which has immense potential. We believed it provided the perfect opportunity for a residential conversion and this has proved to be the case.
“This area is fast becoming a hotspot for the development of new residential property. Persimmon has plans for 1,000 homes nearby, graphically underlining the strength of the market in West Yorkshire.
“When we began to market Hallmark House, we explored a variety of potential uses, including health care, education and offices, but a residential development always looked the most likely – and so it proved,” said Mr Dove. “We are delighted that the magnificent Hallmark House is now going to get a new lease of life.”
The building has a rich history. During the 1930s, W N Sharpe of Bradford built Hallmark House as the headquarters for their successful printing business. In 1984 Hallmark Cards, the family-owned international greetings card business, acquired W N Sharpe’s printing operation for nearly £21m. The colonnaded office building was completely refurbished and opened as Hallmark House in 2001.
It is understood that The Investment Room will name its new development after W N Sharpe.
Mr Dove said: “This new development will create an exclusive environment in a delightful and attractive semi-rural position. The property overlooks mature woodland and countryside, two golf courses, private housing and local schools.”
The site provides extensive and well laid-out car parking together with formal landscaping, all enclosed by a secure perimeter. The property occupies a prominent position between the high-quality outer Bradford residential suburbs and the Airedale towns and villages of Shipley, Cottingley and Bingley.
Hallmark’s decision to move its headquarters to Dawson Lane in south Bradford was announced some months ago. The move will bring head office operations closer to the distribution operation and also create a dedicated creative and design space, enabling the business to be more connected.