Council investment to give businesses new state of the art hub

Council investment to give businesses new state of the art hub

Bassetlaw District Council’s plans to invest in its town centres, support new businesses and boost job creation have taken another step forward with the announcement of a £3.96 million state of the art business hub in Worksop Town Centre.

The Middletons Project is transforming a number of derelict and dilapidated buildings into a modern and multipurpose business hub that will create employment opportunities, offer new start-ups and small businesses with a place to grow and thrive, and bring increased footfall into the town centre to support existing retail businesses.

The Council purchased the Middletons buildings – located at the top of Bridge Street, Worksop – in August 2015 and planning permission for the business hub was granted in October 2019. Site preparation began in November 2019 and complex demolition work began in February 2020.

Progress on the project had been halted by the recent Coronavirus Lockdown. However, building work on the final phase of the project is expected to commence in the coming weeks with a proposed completion date in autumn 2021.

Cllr Jo White, Cabinet Member for Regeneration at Bassetlaw District Council said: “As a Council we need to intervene in the town centre and start to turn around its fortunes. By creating this exciting and multi-purpose office space on the high street, it does not add to the already extremely competitive retail offer and will instead contribute to the number of people that use our town centre for work and shopping.

“As a home for vibrant start-up businesses, progressive small businesses and a place where entrepreneurs can network, we have a vision for the Middleton’s project to be a launch pad for a new generation of businesses as well as a place where established companies can grow and prosper.

“This flagship project is part of our wider regeneration plans to drive investment into our high street and make our town centres a more attractive place to visit, work and live. A healthy high street needs to be a sustainable mix of businesses and retail that will cater for the needs of residents, businesses and visitors alike.”

Funding of £1.8 million has been provided by D2N2 and Midlands Engine through the ‘Unlocking Growth in N2 Town Centres’ programme. This is in addition to match-funding from Bassetlaw District Council and grant funding from National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Sajeeda Rose, Chief Executive of D2N2 said: “As we look towards the economic recovery from Coronavirus, we at D2N2 are delighted to see the Middletons project continue to progress, ready to deliver new jobs to the Worksop area.”

Similar to the Council’s Retford Enterprise Centre, Middletons will provide managed office space with a potential for 34 rentable offices over three floors, in addition to virtual tenancies.

The building has been designed to offer flexible spaces, with the potential to offer bespoke lay-out requests from prospective tenants who sign-up to the project at an early stage.

It will also include two dedicated meeting rooms and break-out areas to encourage networking between businesses, in addition to onsite catering.

The Council has worked closely with architects Player, Roberts, Bell to put forward a design that maintains the unique heritage of the building, whilst making the structure fit for purpose and able to cater for the modern demands of aspiring businesses.

Joe Player, Director at Player Roberts Bell Architects, said: “We are delighted to be working closely with Bassetlaw District Council to realise this exciting new development, creating new office space in the heart of Worksop. 

“The whole team has worked tirelessly to optimise the buildings to help generate employment opportunities, as well as reinstating historic links to improve town centre connectivity. The project is a balance of conserving the old and designing the new, with a highly contextual and contemporary design.”

In addition to office space, the Council’s Economic Development Team will provide occupants with a wrap-around business support service that will include access to start-up Enterprise Grants, pre-start up advice and training, links to supply chains, and skills and recruitment support.

Public spaces have also been incorporated into the design to increase accessibility in the town centre and provide easy access to the high street and public transport hubs.

The project is already encouraging other landlords and building owners to rejuvenate their buildings, some of which have accessed the Council’s Townscape Heritage Fund. This is already contributing to the Council’s vison of the town centre being a more attractive place to visit, work and live.

Last Updated on Thursday, September 10, 2020