The long-running mystery of who could take up residence in a new development at the gateway to Marlow has finally been solved.

Online upholstery furniture retailer Arlo and Jacob has signed a 10-year lease with Sorbon Estates – the commercial arm of the Shanly group – to take over Windsor House, which was initially widely tipped to become a Marks and Spencer store.

But the plans fell through, with the developer saying the “goalposts changed” when the clothing giant announced it was going to close 100 stores by 2022.

The ground floor retail units that Arlo & Jacob will occupy form a part of the wider mixed-use residential scheme at Windsor House, newly developed by Shanly Homes, the housebuilding arm of the Shanly Group.

Directly above the commercial space are 11 one and two-bedroom apartments, which were given the green light in January.

Arlo & Jacob, which has showrooms in London, Bristol and Harrogate, will occupy just over 6,000 sq ft at Windsor House and will pay £182,760 in rent per year, Sorbon Estates said.

Harvey Roberts, commercial director at Arlo & Jacob, said: “Arlo & Jacob is now four years old and we are firmly out of the start-up phase.

“Looking ahead, we have ambitious expansion plans for the next phase of our growth, and this includes investing in our e-commerce platform as well increasing our bricks and mortar presence with a select number of retail showrooms.

“Marlow not only meets our target customer demographic, but it allows us to become a part of the local fabric and community of both national and independent retailers.

“We look forward to opening soon.”

Sorbon Estates managing Director Tamra Booth said: “As a family-run UK based business, Arlo & Jacob is exactly the sort of retailer we like to work with, especially as this previously online-only company recognises the value of having selective physical retail outlets.

“We often hear a lot of negative press around the demise of retail, but our extensive experience in towns like Marlow has proven that this does not need to be the case.

“We are very much long-term investors in the towns across the Sorbon Estates portfolio and are committed to preserving both the character and vitality of a town like Marlow.

“We are confident that Arlo & Jacob is ideally suited to joining Marlow and are pleased to have worked with the company on this phase of its expansion.”