Dalton Mills enjoys £30m ‘renaissance’ aid

Dalton Mills owner Paul Harris outside the iconic building in Keighley

Dalton Mills owner Paul Harris outside the iconic building in Keighley

First published in News by

An historic Keighley mill complex is enjoying a £30million renaissance.

More than 85 per cent of business space at Dalton Mills is now occupied following extensive restoration.

And the impressive Dalton Lane site, whose level of Grade II* listed status puts it among the most architecturally important buildings in the UK, is proving a hit with TV and film companies.

It has provided a backdrop for popular programmes ranging from Peaky Blinders to North And South, as well as a host of Bollywood movies.

Dalton Mills owner Paul Harris – who bought the iconic building last year – says he is delighted with the revitalisation of the site. And he is keen to hear people’s views on what future provision they would like to see there.

Suggestions so far have included retail and leisure facilities, an Asian wedding venue, a wildlife centre and even an observatory.

“Dalton Mills was a building that immediately caught my eye. I think it is beautiful and offers so much scope and potential,” said health-care entrepreneur Mr Harris.

“That’s why I would like to hear from people in the region to find out what they think should be at this historic site in the long-term, and what is missing from their area at the moment.”

In its heyday, Dalton Mills was a thriving manufacturing base employing more than 1,000 people, but as the industry suffered, so too did the fortunes of the building, and by the 1980s it was virtually empty.

The mill was acquired by Magna Holdings in 2004 but was dogged by bad luck, including a major blaze four years ago, which destroyed a large section of the complex.

Now, restoration work to the Genappe Mill part of the site, including a new roof and sandblasting of the stonework, has been carried out. About 50,000 sq ft of the Clock Tower and Riverside section of the complex has become a thriving business hub, housing a range of companies.

Mr Harris added: “In November last year English Heritage upgraded Dalton Mills to Grade II*. Although the change in listing means stricter controls about preserving the building, it could also offer greater access to funding to speed up the restoration even further.”

Other uses being found for the site include ghost hunts. Fright Nights is offering paranormal experiences using the mill for some of its events.

E-mailed inquiries@daltonmills.co.uk to suggest possible uses for the mill.

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