Portsmouth – a modern and dynamic centre attracting visitors and investment

In 1994 Portsmouth celebrated the 800th anniversary of receiving its charter from Richard the Lion Heart. World renowned as the home of the Royal Navy and an international visitor destination, it is now undergoing a major transformation, becoming a cosmopolitan business, leisure and residential waterfront location.

Portsmouth is the great waterfront city situated within the South Hampshire/Solent region of the South East of England – the economic powerhouse of the UK.

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Transport connections

Its south coast location has also made it a UK and European gateway city. The Portsmouth International Port is Britain’s best connected port, providing eight freight and passenger routes to France, Spain and the Channel Islands. Over two million passengers passed through the Port in 2010.

The M275 connects the city centre to the M27 giving immediate access to the UK’s motorway network. Linking to London and all other important business locations, the major airports of Heathrow and Gatwick, plus the nearby regional airports at Southampton and Bournemouth. These road links have been further enhanced with the opening of the Hindhead Tunnel on the A3 in summer 2011, making it quicker to reach London and Heathrow.

Both Heathrow and Gatwick airports are within 70 miles (112 km). Southampton International Airport is only 20 miles (32 km) away and provides flights to other UK cities, the Channel Islands, and European destinations.

Additional UK connectivity is provided by fast and frequent mainline rail services, including direct routes to London Waterloo, Victoria and Gatwick.


Gunwharf Quays – the £200 million, 500,000 sq ft Land Securities owned mixed use development that re-launched Portsmouth as one of the most significant waterfront retail and leisure destinations in Europe. Spinnaker Tower – at 170 metres it is taller than the London Eye and Blackpool Tower, a national icon for Britain – successfully raising the city’s national and international profile as a place to visit, live and work, acting as a catalyst for further investment and development.

World renowned as the home of the Royal Navy and a tourist visitor destination. Portsmouth is also home to high profile UK and multinational companies such as BAE Systems, EADS Astrium, IBM and the Pall Corporation. The city is well represented in the knowledge based and advanced engineering sectors.

There is significant GVA growth despite the economic downturn, which is in part due to the global nature of a number of the city’s companies. This is symbolised by the satellite payloads manufactured by EADS Astrium and the ships constructed by BAE Systems for international customers.


Tourism is a significant sector of the local economy. The city has a long established national and international profile as a visitor destination, with its Historic Dockyard and other attractions, complemented by hosting world class events such as the International Festival of the Sea, Volvo Ocean Race and Great South Run.

Visit England has recognised our city as an Attract Brand. Visit England identify visitor numbers to the city (both holiday and business) with other criteria. For example: consumer choice when asked to name destinations associated with English holiday and perception as a short break destination.


With almost 50kms of waterfront Portsmouth has always provided a unique quality of life and a diverse range of attractions and amenities for its businesses and residents. The offering as a place to live has been significantly enhanced by penthouse, town house and apartment developments at Port Solent Marina, Gunwharf Quays and a number of ex-Navy sites.

The result is the city now offers a complete range of residential opportunities and is featured in the housing supplements of the weekend broadsheets as an attractive place to work, rest and play. However in house price terms it remains a cost competitive south east location with average prices lower than other major business locations.

Portsmouth City Council Inward Investment Service

Portsmouth City Council’s free Inward Investment Service provides comprehensive and bespoke information on available commercial property, development opportunities and demographic data to support company expansion or relocation in Portsmouth.

The inward investment team can arrange visits to sites and premises and act as an interface with commercial agents, building owners and developers if confidentiality is required.

This information and help is provided free and can be on a confidential basis if required.  Please call 023 9284 1074 or email business@portsmouthcc.gov.uk for further assistance.

Invest in Portsmouth

Invest in Portsmouth portal includes a free database of known available commercial properties & sites within Portsmouth and wider South Hampshire region.

Invest in Portsmouth commercial property database

Alternatively Invest in Portsmouth staff can undertake the search on your behalf and to do so please contact: 023 9284 1641 or email: business@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

Related links

Local economy

Business Sectors

People and skills


Commercial Agents Dealing with Premises and Sites in Portsmouth

BNP Paribas Real Estate UK 023 8038 500

CB Richard Ellis 023 8033 8811

Daniells Harrison 013 2922 1199

Savills 023 8071 3900

Garner Wood 023 9262 9000

Goadsby 023 8022 7337

Hellier Langston 01329 220111

Holloway Iliffe & Mitchell 023 9237 7800

Keygrove 023 8063 5333

Jones Langs LaSalle 023 8023 2882

Lambert Smith Hampton 014 8957 9579

Vail Williams 023 9220 3200.