ENTREPRENEUR Robert Morris is building a new £32 million space for companies on the site of his former furniture factory in Glasgow.

Morris, which furnished top hotels and some of the finest liners built on the Clyde, including the Queen Mary and the QE2, sold its business brands four years ago as “the business climate changed”.

Now third generation owner Mr Morris, who concentrates primarily on property and has an equestrian centre near Fenwick in Ayrshire, is launching the new development across the former furniture site.

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The 30-acre Morris Park will consist of 175 units of small workspaces for artisan crafts, work zones and small factory and warehouse units with space for 3,800 people over the next three years.

Tonight 250 invited guests will attend the opening of the first phase of the new development, comprising 17 units. The balance of a further 60 units will be built over the following 14 months. Rentals have started and, after acquiring a three-acre neighbouring site from John Hillhouse Properties, the Morris Group currently has 52 tenants.

Morris Park will have a cafe, restaurant, bar, gym, creche, 100 CCTV cameras and 24-hour security.

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It will cater for a wide range, from one-person operator from month to month, to larger scale offices on 10-year leases. Tenants will be offered a “drag-along” lease, which means that if they sign a lease for five or 10 years, they can move to larger or smaller units to suit their business needs without penalty.

Mr Morris also spoke of moving from his family business which was started as H Morris & Company Limited in 1904 by his grandfather, Harris Morris.

He said: “We always did property but emotionally the move was terrible. I had been in the furniture business since I was 17 years old and it was very sad to say goodbye to long serving employees, but unfortunately the business climate had changed.

“Work on the new development has been ongoing over the last four years and we’ve managed to contract and sub contract over a hundred people on site throughout this process.”