A new joint venture company for regeneration projects in Pendle has been given the go ahead for at least the next ten years.
Councillors at the March Policy and Resources meeting agreed to Pendle Borough Council joining forces with the Brookhouse Group to form PenBrook Developments Ltd.
Rose Rouse, Chief Executive of the Council, said:
“Going into partnership with a strategic developer means that we can lever in private sector expertise and funding to combine with our own long experience in economic regeneration.
“Together we will create a brighter future for Pendle.
“The new joint venture company will start work on the £25 million investment successfully bid for from the Government’s Towns Fund by the Nelson Town Deal,” she explained.
The emphasis will be on the Town Deal project A Revitalised Nelson, designed to bring high profile and long-term vacant and under-used buildings back into use for residential and commercial purposes.
This includes a focus on Pendle Rise shopping centre, a project local people are keen to see tackled, as shown through Nelson Town Deal public engagement.
“The agreed shareholder split for this new joint venture company represents real value for money for major regeneration projects,” stated Rose Rouse.
“For every £1 Pendle Borough Council loans into this new company we will draw down £9 of loan funding from Brookhouse,” she explained.
The Council is keen to build on the success of its existing PEARL joint venture companies, including the transformation of Brierfield Mills into Northlight and affordable eco homes being built in Colne with Together Housing.
“We know we can make a major difference by going into partnership,” explained Rose.
Through the Council’s existing joint ventures a staggering £57m of projects in Pendle have been completed, with over £70 million invested in PEARL projects now underway on site or which are in the pipeline.
Mike Nuttall, Property Director for the Brookhouse Group which is based in Cheshire, said:
“As a northern private sector developer with expertise in retail and a wide range of commercial projects we are looking forward to working on this exciting new challenge.
“We hope our involvement will help to deliver a real positive change in Nelson.
“Our initial focus is the town centre but we are also looking forward to widening our involvement across Pendle.”
The term of the contract with the new joint venture partner Brookhouse will be 15 years, split into a 10 year initial period plus an option to extend for a further five years, at the discretion of the Council.
The Town Deal board which developed the ambitious 10 year plan for Nelson includes representatives from local businesses, the community and voluntary sector, Pendle Borough Council, Nelson Town Council, Lancashire County Council and Nelson and Colne College.
The successful bid to win £25 million investment for Nelson from the Government’s Towns Fund was announced by the Government in July 2021.