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Monday, August 10, 2015

New industrial units will meet needs of modern businesses and help boost the local economy

West Lancashire Borough Council is giving a boost to the local economy by creating new industrial units designed to meet the needs of modern businesses.

The 11 new units will replace those which used to stand at 18-24 Gorsey Place on the Gillibrands industrial estate. These were demolished in 2013 as they were no longer fit for purpose.

The Council receives a lot of enquiries from businesses looking for smaller factory units suitable for light industry and storage businesses. The authority hopes this new development, called Greenshoots and located at Gorsey Place, Skelmersdale, will help meet that demand and create new jobs in West Lancashire.

Housing and Regeneration specialist Keepmoat (external link) will build the units on behalf of the Council and work is due to start in November 2015. The company plans to work with the Council, West Lancashire College and local training agencies to provide traineeships and work experience placements for local people.

Once these units are filled with new tenants, the Council may look at investing in similar schemes to encourage even more businesses to come to Skelmersdale.

Councillor Ian Moran, leader of the Council and portfolio holder for regeneration and estates, said: “We believe we have identified a gap in the market for this type of unit and these new units will help local businesses and attract new ones to the borough, all of which will help create jobs in West Lancashire.

“The new units will also improve the Council’s portfolio of industrial properties. If this scheme proves as successful as we expect it to be then we will look at doing more projects to create new and improved business premises.”

Jeff Hook, Construction Director at Keepmoat, said: “This is a fantastic achievement for Keepmoat and we’re delighted to be working with West Lancashire Borough Council to deliver a project that will have a profound and positive impact on businesses in the local area.

“Throughout the project we will be working closely with different stakeholders to ensure that significant investment is made into providing work experience and traineeships to support the local community.”

The 11 new units range from 1,000 sq ft to 2,250 sq ft and will have HGV access and ample on-site parking. Gillibrands as an area has excellent links with the motorway network.

Council staff anticipate the new units will be available to rent from spring 2016 and demand is expected to be high, with one firm already having arranged a pre-let on three of the units. The Council is currently taking expressions of interest in the development and businesses should contact the Estates Team on 01695 712616 or email pat.whearty@westlancs.gov.uk.

The development is expected to cost £1.75m, this being financed by a combination of Council resources set aside for such purposes and prudentially borrowing the remainder.

Regeneration and Estate team can help businesses to search for land and property in West Lancashire and businesses can use the online search facility locate or email info.edu@westlancs.gov.uk with their requirement.

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