Mystery surrounds the future of a shopping mall in the former Romford Debenhams store as the current leaseholder says he is set to end his tenure.

Aklu Miah had leased the site of the former Debenhams in Market Place and turned it into Aklu Plaza.

The shopping mall opened in 2022, with the ground floor housing the flagship Home Superstore.

There were also plans to convert the top floor into a banqueting suite.

Romford Recorder: Aklu MiahAklu Miah (Image: Archant)

But Home Superstore closed months ago, and Mr Miah previously told the Recorder that the banqueting hall proposal could be scrapped.

Read More: Romford Aklu Plaza owner: No plans to shut shopping centre

As recently as last month, he had said there were no plans to shut the mall and it is now being managed by his brother.

But Aklu Plaza Ltd, of which Mr Miah was the director, was dissolved last week and he has now revealed to the Recorder that he is ending the lease for the site in December.

Weeks ago, a vendor at the mall had claimed that they have been “struggling” to survive as they say footfall to the site has dropped after Home Superstore’s closure.

A food retailer, Kacha Bazaar, and a furniture showroom are still operating out of the mall.

Mr Miah added: “It will be really up to the new leaseholder to decide what to do with the place and whether to keep them (the existing units)."

The mall's launch was targeted by far-right protestors in 2021 who labelled it as “non-European”.

These were condemned heavily by Mr Miah, and the then leader of Havering Council Damian White.

The mall’s staff were also allegedly racially abused during a fish mela event.

Mr Miah previously put issues for the centre down to parking problems in the area.

He said: “The parking outside the building is a bit confusing, it ruined the whole thing. When we opened, we had many people visiting, but then people had to wait around trying to find parking.”