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Sunday, July 14, 2024

Multi-million-pound Marsden Mills plan “unviable”, new report says

This is despite £5.6m from the government's Levelling Up scheme and £11.7m in private sector funding

Transformative multi-million-pound plans for Marsden are now “unviable”, despite securing £5.6 million from the government, a recently published report states.

Pre-application documents to next week’s meeting of Kirklees Council’s Strategic Planning Committee say that plans for the redevelopment of New Mills will need more cash to go ahead. This is on top of the millions of pounds in Levelling Up cash and £11.7m of private sector funding.

Of the proposals that cinched the government funding, the document states: “The preapplicant team have since recalculated that option’s viability (in light of increased costs) and has found that, even with the DLUHC (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities) funding, it is now unviable, and would require additional funding to bridge the gap.”

Now, a different option is said to be “preferred”, which sees some small changes to the original plans. However, this too is described as “unviable”, requiring further funding.

The site of New Mills, or Crowther’s Mill as it is known by locals, is around one and a half hectares in size, located in the heart of Marsden, and bordered by Brougham Road, Warehouse Hill Road, Crowther Bruce Mill Road and Derby Terrace.

There are a number of buildings on the site, the majority of which are said to be unoccupied and none with listed status. The pre-application documents propose the demolition of several of the buildings but Kirklees Council Conservation and Design have expressed some concerns.

The proposed developments would make way for offices, flats and industrial units. There would also be pedestrian access across the River Colne which runs along part of the site’s northern edge, and two-way vehicular access from Brougham Road, with another point of access proposed from Crowther Bruce Mill Road.

An application for planning permission is expected to be submitted in the near future.

Aside from the mill development, Marsden is set to undergo a much larger regeneration, with a ‘Blueprint’ being drawn up. The council says it will work with the local community to develop investment plans for the next decade and beyond.

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