On the Move: Michael Wiseman

509wisemanThis week, The Grafton celebrates not a welcome, but a farewell: Centre Director Michael Wiseman is retiring after 12 great years at the center.

Wiseman’s career in retail spanned many years of buying for retailers like Gordon Thodays, House of Fraser and Dickins & Jones, before moving into the marketing and managing side of things as Marketing Manager and eventually General Manager of Milton Keynes and General Manager at Barkers in Kensington, London.

In 1991, he crossed the sales floor and to shopping centre management, at Regent Arcade, Queensmere, and The Pavilions, leading to his position at The Graftons. For the last twelve years, Michael has been the driving force behind the center’s 390,000 square feet of shopping, multiplex cinema, food court, restaurants and two department stores on behallf of owners Prudential and Managing Agents CBRE.

Wiseman worked closely with the many interest groups and working parties in a city blessed with two universities and a major tourism industry, particularly with local lobbying and city groups. He also brought diversity to the Centre with an enviable mix of ‘big name’ stores coupled with an assortment of unique independent shops in Eden Hall where he was active in attracting vintage shops, specialist beauty salons, cobblers, silversmiths and a traditional sweet shop – all which give The Grafton a cosmopolitan atmosphere attracting shoppers of every age.

As well as his commitment to the local economy, during his time at The Grafton, Wiseman developed the Centre’s long term associations with local charities including the East Anglia Children’s Hospice and the annual Santa Run as well as the Giving Tree Project in association with Heart FM. In 2012, both events recorded their most successful results with 450 Runners taking part in the Santa Run resulting in the highest Sunday footfall during the year and a 14.5% increase on the same day in 2011 and a record 7,127 gifts donated to the Giving Tree Appeal.

“I shall still be around for a bit longer,” says Michael. “I have really enjoyed my time at The Grafton – it has been a marvellous place to work with a good team and I am proud of what we have been able to achieve for the community – including fund rasing events – over the years.”

Congratulations on your retirement, Michael!

The Many Faces of Michael Wiseman

Have you recently made a move or welcomed someone new to your team? Let us know and your story may be told in our next On the Move.

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