The first attempt to put a new shopping centre on site in 1993 was approved by a planner against the wishes of Bournemouth Borough Council: objectors feared that the centre could deal a major blow to retailers in the town centre and the suburbs as Boscombe and Winton but the construction project finally took off the ground and on 27 October 2003, and, following a major redevelopment of the site, the new centre rising on a 41 acre site -the equivalent of 16 football pitches-opened to the public with the name of Castlepoint Shopping Park
Construction of the centre, took over two years and cost some £275 million. The first stores to open where B&Q, Sainsbury’s Asda, M&S, GAP, Next WH Smith, the largest in the region along with Clarks, River Island and Argos.
At the cut of the ribbon 1500 balloons were realised in the sky.
“If we wanted to shop in big store we had to travel to Southampton or farther but now we have a huge development right at our doorstep: That's exciting!”
- Alison Caswell 33 then from Christchurch
Between 2005 and 2006 the car park was closed to the public following safety concerns. This led to the temporary closure of all stores within the main site. Following repair work, the car park was made safe and stores in the main centre were re-opened to the public .
In December 2014 the centre was given permission by the local council to rebuild the car parks in a phased manner. The work is to be completed in 5 separate blocks to minimise disruption to shoppers and tenants. The redevelopment of the site will add another interesting page to the story of Castlepoint.
There have been many changes of this site that has gone across the lives of four generations and millions of people in Bournemouth catering for their Christmas, Easter, summer shopping, celebrating together many lights switch on and festive times and ,one way or another, has always kept “shopping” at the hearts of people in Bournemouth the best is yet to come.