THE first phase of a ten-year scheme has got underway to transform the site of a former West Yorkshire pit into a new community of almost 1,000 new homes plus businesses and shops.
Harworth Estates has started development work at the former Prince of Wales Colliery site in Pontefract.
The company has won planning consent from Wakefield Council to build 917 new homes on the 77-acre former pit yard along with 230,000 sq ft of business space, shops, cafes, a medical centre, a community centre, a nursery and parkland.
At the spoil heap – where up to 2m tonnes of coal is currently being extracted – Harworth Estates plan to create a new country park, access ways and footpaths.
Work on both sites has started to extract a total of more than 3.5m tonnes of coal and slurry from the spoil heap and lagoons.
Soil will then be imported to re-model and prepare the site for development.
Harworth is collaborating with Alkane Energy to build a power generation plant for the area’s electricity network using methane gas from the former mine workings.
In June, the Government said it would contribute £4.1m to the £6m cost of creating the Northern Link Road in Pontefract. The road, which will be part-funded by Wakefield Council, will link Park Road with Skinner Road and open up the former pit site.
Owen Michaelson, chief executive at Harworth Estates, said: “Providing almost 1,000 homes and enabling further development of the Northern Link Road, the scheme will help stimulate further residential and commercial development, ensuring future economic growth in the area.”