A DEVELOPER behind a major new leisure and retail project in Kendal town centre said the enterprise is entering an exciting phase as she pulls together her 'dream' food offerings.

Geraldine Ward and her partner William Smith are the team behind the Spinning Jennies development on Finkle Street which will see the former Beales department store turned into a residential, retail, food, and drinks complex, mainly filled with independent, local businesses.

With the project starting over a year ago, Geraldine has revealed that the first-floor food hall is the next priority to put together.

"I'm reaching out now for the right food vendors to occupy the spaces", she said.

"We've got space for ten vendors but in terms of seating initially, we’re probably going to open the first four, and then add on.

"My dream is to have things like Afghan street food, and a seafood shack, like they have on the beaches down in Devon, for example.

"Sicilian street market food's always tasty, whether it’s octopus and garlic through to more simple Italian style.

In Cumbria: The individual food units on the leftThe individual food units on the left (Image: Geraldine Ward)

"Moroccan and Lebanese food are both loves of mine too.

"I worked in Beirut years ago so I’m very fond of anything from that part of the Mediterranean.

"I'd love to see people being served tagines with some bread to soak it all up.

"The base idea is that they buy Cumbrian produce in whatever it is they make and sell.

"It might be me dreaming but I'm throwing an appeal to anyone out there that could offer something like this.

"The whole central area will be seating. We’re also going to put in a small stage so we can have a bit of live music going on now and again."

READ MORE: Sections of former Beales store to become flats, cottages and a holiday home

She also revealed that she is working with designer Judy Deakin, of Form Interior Design, to create the right look for the food hall and outlined the plans for the rest of the building with the retail offering now being developed on the ground floor.

She said: "Around the retail that we're putting on the ground floor will be the champagne bar and tea rooms at the back, and linked with a little staircase going down to what used to be Beales cafe, which we’re going to revive as an all-day cafe.

"So there’ll now be food and drink on every level."