Next step for £50m Leeds mills renovations

Fifty-million-pound plans to renovate two of Leeds’s most prominent former mill buildings are set to take the next step this week.

Monday, 2nd November 2020, 5:30 pm
Updated Monday, 2nd November 2020, 5:34 pm

Work on the latest stage of the £50m Victoria Riverside residential development in Hunslet is about to start, and is set to create 95 apartments over the two former Hunslet and Victoria flax spinning mills.

The historic mills, which are grade II listed, were opened during Leeds’s industrial boom of the 1840s, and were once close to demolition.

But developers JM Construction, who bought the buildings back in 2017, claim work on this phase is expected to be completed in November 2021.

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The renovation is expected to be finished by next year.
The renovation is expected to be finished by next year.

The full scheme, which will eventually be made of up of 356 flats across seven individual mills, is expected to be completed by 2023.

Developers claim 160 apartments in the four completed mills have been sold.

John Mulleady, Managing Director of JM Construction, said: “Sales to date have

been exceptional and we look forward to bringing mills e and f to market.

“We are privileged to have the opportunity to breathe new life into the site and

refurbish the derelict mill buildings which were on the brink of demolition. They form part of the rich history of the city when it was once a world leader in textile manufacturing and through our sympathetic conversion will be enjoyed by future generations.”

The plans form part of the Leeds South Bank project – one of the world’s largest ongoing urban regeneration schemes. The council hopes its master-plan will help new developments double the size of the city centre, creating 35,000 jobs and 8,000 new homes in that area over the next 15 years.

Other plans for the scheme include a city centre park on the former Tetley Brewery site – plans which also include 850 flats, a five-storey office building and two hotels, all of which was given outline planning permission in 2018.

Based off of Goodman Street in Hunslet, the former mill site was purchased by Leeds based developer JM Construction for an undisclosed sum in July 2017.

Renowned engineer William Fairbairn constructed Hunslet Mill for John Wilkinson in 1842 who employed 1,500 female workers as flax spinners. The mills were vacated 40 years ago by tool-making firm RH Bruce.