Business tenants sought for Shrewsbury's Flax Mill

Businesses interested in moving into Shrewsbury's historic Flax Mill are being sought as preparations for its potential multi-million redevelopment step up a gear.

Business tenants sought for Shrewsbury's Flax Mill

Partners behind the ambitious plans to bring the long-derelict site back into use are now reaching out to companies who may be interested in taking up office space at the former maltings.

The latest stage in the efforts to transform the site were unveiled at a public meeting in Shrewsbury last night.

Claire Cox, investment officer for Shropshire Council, gave a short presentation to an audience of about 200 people at the Guildhall about the commercial plans for the Flax Mill.

She said business tours are being arranged for interested parties, with the Flax Mill's rich history as a forerunner to skyscrapers being promoted.

"Fundamentally we believe the unique selling point is being a tenant in the world's first iron-framed building," she said. "We forget about the significance of what we have on our doorstep and the asset it is for Shrewsbury, Shropshire and the wider economy."

She said work to pull down the giant North Silo and former Arriva bus depot to clear the site for redevelopment potentially to start next year have sent out an important message.

"The demolitions have been a very bold statement that things are happening and these are very exciting times," she said.

Under current plans, the top three floors will be rented to businesses and other organisations, helping subsidise running costs.

Campaigners hope to see businesses, arts groups, bars, restaurants and, eventually, homes created. If funding is secured, redevelopment is due to start in August 2013.

By Chris Burn

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