Derelict Tesco site ideal for mix of shops and houses

The derelict Northdate Mills in Cleckheaton.
The derelict Northdate Mills in Cleckheaton.

A top level meeting to thrash out problems of derelict land in the middle of Cleckheaton was held on Friday.

The meeting involved representatives from Tesco, Spen MP Mike Wood, ward councillors, Kirklees Regeneration and Investment Unit and the Spenborough Chamber of Trade.

The aim of the meeting,organised and chaired by Spen Valley Civic Society, was to see how to tackle the derelict land which represents around half the town centre.

Of particular concern is the area between Serpentine Road and Northgate, currently owned by Tesco, but no longer required by the supermarket chain after it ditched plans for a brand new superstore.

Ideas and opinions on potential future use were discussed and agreement reached that a mixed development, with housing, shops and offices, would best serve the needs of the local community, and provide impetus to regenerate the town centre.

Adam Williams, Corporate Affairs Manager at Tesco said: “We are keen to hear the views of the community on the best use for the site and we are grateful to the Civic Society for facilitating this meeting.

“The feedback we receive will be extremely useful in finding the right solution for Cleckheaton, and we will be meeting Kirklees Council shortly to discuss potential options in more detail.

“In the meantime we hope to be able to start demolishing the derelict buildings on the site in the coming weeks.

Colin Berry, on behalf of the Civic Society, said he was pleased with the positive progress made.

He also hoped it would spark similar positive ideas to regenerate the rest of Cleckheaton, especially land off Horncastle street, and the old goods yard next to the Greenway.

“Integrated planning of these sites alongside Tesco proposals would be a massive boost to the town,” he said.