May 10, 2022

Dozens of businesses express interest in presence at new enterprise campus

MORE than 35 businesses have expressed an interest in becoming tenants of an innovative enterprise campus planned for West Cumbria.

A series of illustrations unveiling an exciting new look for a redeveloped Leconfield Industrial Estate in Cleator Moor were revealed for the first time last month, with a planning application for the main 4,000 square metre hub submitted to Copeland Borough Council last week.

Proposals to carry out refurbishment work on a number of the existing units have also been submitted for approval.

Support for the scheme has gathered momentum, with scores of businesses making enquiries regarding tenancy. 

The planned work is a major part of Enterprising Town, one of four projects that make up the Cleator Moor Town Deal which secured an offer of £22.5 million from the Government’s Towns Fund last year.

Enterprising Town will include the redevelopment of existing buildings on the industrial estate at Leconfield and also create new buildings on the site including an Enterprise Campus Hub. Three possible partners for the hub have already come forward.

Bob Metcalfe, Chair of the Cleator Moor Town Deal Board, said: “Enterprising Town will kickstart what will be a significant redevelopment of the Leconfield Industrial Estate, creating jobs, opportunity and acting as a catalyst for inward investment in the town.

“It is a major initiative and therefore it is incredibly encouraging to have such healthy levels of interest at this stage. We will continue to work hard with our project partners as we prepare to submit our final business plan for the project to the government.”

The development of the site forms part of the recently-launched iSH (Industrial Solutions Hub) initiative, aiming to provide employment and training opportunities for local people, and helping to regenerate the community.

John Maddison, managing director of iSH, said: “The levels of interest we are seeing in organisations wanting to be part of this exciting opportunity to develop the Leconfield site are really encouraging.

The Enterprising Town project will be a catalyst for what iSH is looking to achieve in Cleator Moor and across the wider West Cumbria community by bringing a range of organisations together and, through genuine collaboration, creating jobs and opportunities which will regenerate communities and transform people’s lives.”

The campus will also include extensive landscaping to increase biodiversity on-site by 10 per cent while improving public areas and creating new cycle and footpaths to connect the site with wider areas of Cleator Moor. 

The three other projects which form a part of the Town Deal Process are:

Revitalised Town – to increase activity and footfall around the Town Square by bringing vacant and under-utilised buildings back into active use while creating an attractive new public realm. Uses will include a new cultural community hub and enhanced business space.

Connected Town – this scheme will deliver a high-quality integrated and sustainable transport network which improves connections between employment, education, amenities and leisure and transforms the accessibility and attractiveness of Cleator Moor.

Healthy Town – To enhance existing sports and leisure provision to create a modern multi-purpose centre including an indoor sports hall, flexible studio space, gym and café, alongside wider health and well-being provision. This will improve population health and generate more reasons for people to visit and spend time in Cleator Moor.

Further details for each of the projects will be made available after the assurance stage is complete when people will be able to comment on the proposals before submission to Government later this year.

A public exhibition with display boards showcasing the latest updates from all four projects will be held at the Cleator Moor Civic Hall on Tuesday 24 May between 2pm-4pm and 5pm-7pm.

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