Decade-long journey concludes for £32m Northlight
Joint venture partners Barnfield Investment Properties and Pendle Council have reached official completion on the mixed-use redevelopment of the historic Brierfield Mill.
The grade two-listed East Lancashire complex’s transformation is now complete with 85 two-bedroom apartments, education facilities, 103,000 sq ft of office and industrial workspace, 25,000 sq ft of business storage space, and leisure and cultural facilities.
The Pendle Enterprise and Regeneration (Brierfield Mill) Ltd vehicle launched a national masterplan and design competition in 2012 for the 380,000 sq ft project.
In a deal 100% backed by grant funding from Homes England, Pendle bought the mill that year for £1.5m, transferring the ownership to the PEARL JV.
Pendle Enterprise and Regeneration Ltd (PEARL) as a whole was established by local construction company Barnfield and the local authority for regeneration projects, initially advancing a community-based arts, culture and enterprise centre called the ACE Centre in Nelson.
Since then, the JV has delivered at sites including Shackleton Hall, Market Street and Harrison Drive.
PEARL invested £17.9m in the redevelopment, with a further £11.82m secured through the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership growth deal, BFC in the Community and its investors, Lancashire County Council and Nelson & Colne College.
Tim Webber, managing director of Barnfield Construction and PEARL board member, said: “We started work on Northlight in 2016 with the winning masterplan.
“The first project was the offices, we engaged in a partnership with Nelson & Colne College and Lancashire County Council to bring in Lancashire Adult Learning, who now occupy the building. Having Lancashire Adult Learning at Northlight was really the anchor to the scheme.”
Webber continued: “Latterly, Richard Sutton and Brian Nelson, former BFC director were looking to expand and create an indoor community leisure facility, and the Leisurebox was created.”
The joint venture partners also brought in the Business First business centre, Store First on the self storage side, Northlight Industries managed office space, arts organisation In-Situ and the FUNDA gym within the Leisurebox.
On a 2018 site visit, Webber told Place North West about the developing plans for the site, with residential consent recently secured.
Marking official completion last week, Webber said: “We are very proud to bring this iconic facility, and everything it comes with, to our local area. Had this iconic building not been rescued, it would have been a real detriment to the area of Brierfield and hopefully now we have made something for the residents of Pendle to be proud of.”
Rose Rouse, chief executive of Pendle Council said “The success of the project is down to the power of partnership working. All of this would have not been possible without the engagement of Homes England, Lancashire County Council, the LEP, Pendle Borough Council, Burnley FC In the Community and Nelson & Colne College.
“The project is providing a better quality of life for local people, has supported a range of local businesses, created hundreds of jobs, secured much needed market housing and widened housing choice in Pendle and regenerated a dilapidated site.”
Cllr Asjad Mahmood, leader of Pendle Borough Council, said:” We’re immensely proud of PEARL’s flagship project Northlight. PEARL continues to be a driving force for regeneration in Pendle.”