Last updated 23 May 2022
Major moment for Stockport Town Centre West as work set to start on Capital&Centric’s Weir Mill restoration
Funding is in place and a contractor appointed to start work on site next month.
The transformation of Stockport’s historic Weir Mill into a buzzing new neighbourhood is set to begin, with funding in place from Stockport Council and Stockport Mayoral Development Corporation (MDC), and a contractor appointed to start work on site next month.
Social impact developers Capital&Centric, with Stockport MDC and Stockport Council, have appointed Sisk as the main contractor for the £60m community, which will see over 250 design-led apartments in the Grade II listed mill and two new-build blocks. The homes will sit alongside stunning new spaces for indie businesses including bars, restaurants, cafés and shops.
The site, located close to Stockport 8 - a new 8 acre site set to deliver up 1,200 new homes - is the next major redevelopment for Stockport Town Centre West.
Working closely and with grant support from the Homes England Housing Infrastructure Fund and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority Brownfield Fund, the sensitive restoration of Weir Mill will create a new commercial space and establish a new leisure and culture destination for Stockport Town Centre West, transforming Stockport into the most sustainable and liveable town centre in Greater Manchester.
Adam Higgins, co-founder of Capital&Centric said: “Weir Mill has been a constant presence in Stockport, with parts of the buildings dating back to the 1700s. Now it’s set to be the main character in the town’s next storyline. You really feel the rich heritage when you’re stood on site, we knew from day one we needed to honour that with something properly special. The neighbourhood will be just that, with new public squares, foodie hangouts and tranquil green spots. Not only a top place to live, but a visitor pull for Stockport.
“There’s no doubt, it’s a turbulent time at the moment, but we’re ploughing on. It’s creative neighbourhoods like this that will propel the region’s recovery. We’re itching to get on site in the coming weeks.”
It’s a major moment for Capital&Centric and the Stockport Mayoral Development Corporation (MDC), with Weir Mill a cornerstone project of the £1billion town centre transformation. The innovative MDC was set up to unlock delivery up to 4,000 new homes and 1 million sq ft of new employment space in a major 15-year overhaul set to make the town one of the region’s most liveable.
Lord Bob Kerslake, Chair of the Stockport MDC, said: “This is another fantastic example of the momentum and pace of transformation being achieved in Stockport thanks to a can do attitude and collaboration across the board. We’re delivering on what the MDC set out to do, create long-term inclusive growth by transforming the town with new homes, jobs and sustainable communities.
“Weir Mill will be a catalytic site that will drastically improve the whole area, located just a stone’s throw from the Interchange. Particularly against the current volatility of the construction industry, this is a major achievement to get such as vision fully funded, with a respected contractor appointed and work set to start.”
Weir Mill is the latest labour of love for Capital&Centric, the Manchester-based team that specialise in delivering communities with a design-led edge - the Kampus garden neighbourhood next to Manchester’s gay village a perfect example. They’re also on site restoring an iconic former cutlery works in Sheffield (the setting for an upcoming Channel 4 primetime design show).
The vision in Stockport has always been to deliver a community with an identity true to Stockport’s independent scene, not an identikit of other high streets. Weir Mill will include loads of lush outdoor spaces for people to spend time, creating a laid back riverside vibe while celebrating the site’s industrial past.
Cllr Mark Hunter, Leader of Stockport Council, said: “I’m delighted that we can take this next phase of Stockport’s ambitious £1bn regeneration forward as the MDC reaches its next milestone. The MDC will deliver thousands of new homes, creating a new town centre neighbourhood for future generations to live and enjoy.
“It is exciting times for the MDC with the progress at the Interchange, Exchange Phase 4 and the recent announcement of the Stockport 8 development opportunity. These will greatly enhance the quality of life for local people, and see Stockport become the most liveable and well-connected town centre in Greater Manchester.
“For a developer of Capital & Centric’s reputation to deliver this strategic site is testament to the appeal of the MDC and Stockport and shows real confidence from the private sector. Our vison for the town centre is moving forward at pace and I look forward to plans progressing now the contractor has been appointed.”
The build is set to take around two years. Initial strip out and limited demolition is currently taking place on site, with the newly-appointed main contractor to take over in June. Founded in Ireland, Sisk has become a respected builder and contractor, delivering projects in Ireland, the UK and across Europe.
Alan Rodger, Managing Director, at Sisk’s UK North division, said: “The redevelopment of Weir Mill is a key building block in the transformation of Stockport and we are delighted to be working with Capital & Centric to bring it back to life. Sisk has a strong track record in the Northwest of delivering some great projects that bring life back to our cities and towns while retaining the link with the architecture of our industrial past.”
Weir Mill will feature:
•Chestergate and King Street West: A new gateway into the town centre, with ground floor spaces for independent shops, cafes or delis and plenty of lush greenery.
• Water Front: A new public space looking out across the River Mersey, providing a place for riverside chilling in the evening sun or some fine dining in the restored Wheel house overlooking the water.
• Weir Mill East: Sensitively designed new buildings featuring a mix of homes, drawing inspiration from the site’s manufacturing history.
• Weavers Square: What will become the heart of the scheme and a new destination for Stockport. The old cast iron columns of Weavers Shed are being retained to create a vibrant new outdoor space for riverside street markets, DJ sets, live music events and performing arts.
• West Shed: A striking indoor space with exposed brick vaulted arches and cast-iron columns, creating a relaxed space to take your laptop, grab a coffee and while away the day.
• West Courtyard: The former working courtyard to the mills, this will be a quieter, more contemplative garden space for residents and the general public to chill out, with plants, trees and secluded spaces to explore.