Businessman snaps up an opportunity

Hiran Panchal, who has opened a new studio at Cotton Court, Preston
Hiran Panchal, who has opened a new studio at Cotton Court, Preston
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Businessman Hiran Panchal thought he was just doing a friend a favour when he ‘test drove’ a new city centre office block.

But, the design expert found himself becoming a partner in Preston’s newest photography studio.

He trialled new ‘hot desk’ facilities at Cotton Court, the former wireworks off Church Street in the city centre, for owner Rob Binns and found himself picking up work from a number of his neighbouring business.

Soon he decided to make the offices his permanent home before the owner offered him the chance to take a stake in Cotton Studios, a new studio opened in the building.

The Walton-le-Dale-based businessman said: “I do a lot of fashion work for websites I design and when I saw this space I knew it was ideal for a photography studio.

“There used to be a couple of studios in Preston but they have all closed down now, so there was an obvious gap in the market.

“Rob is one of those guys who does not wait around, when he sees an opportunity he goes for it and that is exactly what we have done here.”

The studios are now attracting business from families seeking portrait pictures to Preston-based fashion house, Rhodi Clothing.

Mr Binns added: “I had been toying with the idea today of opening a studio for a while because I have been told finding studio space in Preston is a nightmare.

“I know Hiran, so it made perfect sense.”