A shopping centre manager is celebrating after reaching ten years in charge.
Mark Rycraft, 45, joined the team at Middleton Grange in Hartlepool in 2006 and said: “I’ve loved working as manager at Middleton Grange, but I can’t quite believe it has been 10 years already.”
As I move into my second decade here, we’ll be looking to continue to improve the customer experience for all of our shoppers, and everyone in the town who comes to Middleton GrangeMark Rycraft
The shopping centre has changed significantly during Mark’s decade in charge. He said: “We’ve had some amazing new retailers come to the centre, and as we worked to lead the way on sustainability we also spearheaded the installation of solar panels.
“One of the biggest ongoing challenges that I have experienced during my time at Middleton Grange is keeping up the high level of customer satisfaction for local people - and those visiting Hartlepool - by working to open new stores as well as introducing our free Sunday parking.”
He described the opening of the H&M store and the on-site playroom as particular highlights. He also worked extremely hard to become a community ambassador for the centre.
“Moving from place to place throughout my career, I felt it was important to immerse myself within the town and really get to know Hartlepool,” he said.
Mark co-founded the Defibs 4 Hartlepool campaign, has become a Teach First Mentor, is a member of Hartlepool Round Table, and also founded the North East Shopping Centre Forum.
He is now looking to the future at Middleton Grange and said he had seen efforts to enhance the mix of stores and brands “really start to pay off”.
He added: “As I move into my second decade here, we’ll be looking to continue to improve the customer experience for all of our shoppers, and everyone in the town who comes to Middleton Gra)nge.”