Valley Heritage have been working with Rossendale Borough Council to secure the future of Waterside Mill since 2015.
We were successful in securing funding from the Architectural Heritage Fund and Heritage Lottery Fund to explore the re-use of the building in more detail, which resulted in an application to the Heritage Lottery Fund in late 2016.
This application was unfortunately unsuccessful. The Heritage Lottery Fund is a highly competitive process and we needed £3.7 million for the project, bringing the building back into use for manufacturing / light industrial use. Whilst disappointing, we learned a great deal from the process which is helping our work going forwards.
The building is Grade II Listed and in very poor condition. The owner is not contactable and has effectively abandoned the building. It is dangerous to go inside. Even demolition would be very expensive (estimated at over £300, 000) and require Rossendale Borough Council to compulsorily purchase the building, a lengthy and costly process, as well as securing Listed Building Consent for its demolition.
On a more positive note, Historic England have recently included the building in their ‘Engines of Prosperity’ publication, intended to raise awareness and support the re-use of Waterside Mill and buildings like it, demonstrating that our industrial heritage can form a positive and valuable part of our towns and villages. A copy can be found here: Engines of Prosperity
We are continuing to work on the project and are exploring a wide range of options with our partners and are hopeful that an option will emerge soon which restores the building and brings it back into use. Some of the options are looking promising, we hope to be able to share good news soon!
See our latest update here