Globe Works, Featherfoot Globe, c Google Earth

Work has ceased on Globe Works' conversion, which had been targeting a December 2023 completion. Credit: Google Earth

SPV behind 150-flat mill conversion in Bolton goes bust

Featherfoot Globe was meant to revitalise the historic Globe Works site off Bridgeman Street. Now, the company – linked to Yorkshire-based Empire Development Holdings – has appointed administrators, grinding those plans to a halt.

Paul Rothwell is the sole director of Featherfoot Globe SPV. The company’s purpose was to oversee the conversion of the 19th-century textile mill into 150 apartments. The Globe Works project in Bolton was marketed as being part of Rothwell’s Empire Development Holdings company on promotional material.

Joint administrators Lee Lockwood and Gareth Harris of RSM Restructuring Advisory were appointed on 10 April to the SPV.

Lockwood said: “While we are still in the early stages, initial information indicates the company may have become insolvent due to a range of factors including (but not limited to) difficulties sourcing labour in the current tight labour market, increased material costs caused by macro-economic factors, increased interest rates, and issues in completing unit sales, due to reduced appetite from buyers.”

Solomon Investment Partners, who had been marketing the Globe Works to potential investors, announced in November last year that it would cease trading after “continuing issues with the developer Empire Property Holdings and their associated companies”.

A statement on Solomon’s website reads: “Unfortunately, Empire [has] failed to deliver on its commitments, and this has had a direct impact on investors as well as on Solomon Investment Partners, which has not received the payments it was due.”

Featherfoot Globe is not the only Rothwell company to enter administration in the past few years.

Rothwell was also behind Empire Property Concepts, later renamed MCIOD. MCIOD went into administration last year, owing subcontractors and suppliers more than £500,000.

That company had been working on converting Lambert House in Stockport into 98 flats, a project that secured planning permission last year. The SPV for that scheme, Featherfoot Lambert House, is still active, according to Companies House.

MCIOD had also been behind a project to deliver 269 homes off Bradshawgate in Bolton, having secured planning permission in February 2022 from the council while still known as Empire Property Concepts.

Rothwell has another company active in Greater Manchester. He is the director of Vision Manchester, an SPV working on a £125m residential tower off Manchester’s Whitworth Street West. Main contractor Domis began enabling works in October, with a projected completion date for the 37-storey building set for 2026.

Place North West has reached out to Empire Development Holdings for comment.

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This us a great pity the MILL IN BOLTON hasbeen squashed. Lets hope another company will come along and save the building. These mills are our heritage so well built and can ve put ti good use.

By June Rios

I’m pleased to see this topic gaining attention in the media. Personally, I’ve been waiting for my investment, made back in 2021, to be returned for over four years now. I’m curious if there are others in a similar situation and would appreciate hearing their thoughts



By Phil croft

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