Work has begun to develop the former site of Kellingley Colliery - the last deep coal mine in the UK
Work has finally started on the multi-million-pound industrial development at the former Kellingley Colliery.
CRT Property Investment Ltd, the wholly-owned subsidiary of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, the only organisation dedicated to supporting former mining communities throughout the UK, is creating a £3.4m industrial business park for small-and-medium-sized businesses.
The steel structures for the buildings are now in place with a completion date set for January 21, 2022, and the first tenants hopefully moving in by the end of the month.
Shaun O’Brien, property investment and development director for CRT said: “ There are three buildings which in total are 39,000 sq ft.
“We’ve divided them up into 11 units which range from 2,500 to 8,000 sq ft which will support between 50 and 100 jobs.”
Mr O’Brien said that access to reliable public transport was often an issue in coalfield communities and added: “We’ve taken the decision to build these developments in the coalfield communities, enabling people to have an opportunity to gain access to a job that they wouldn’t necessarily have.”
“If you don’t have a car or access to good public transport getting to a job five or ten miles down the road is particularly difficult and that job might as well be 25 miles away.”
CRT has only been marketing the scheme for two weeks and there has already been considerable interest.
Mr O’Brien said: We have one or two parties from the local vicinity and one or two who live in the area but commute quite a long way into work.
“They can look at relocating their business into the area so they don’t have to travel as far which is the point in what we hope to achieve.
“It’s about generating sustainability within the local community.”
Mr O’Brien said the units they were building were aspirational and added: “If you own a business which is your pride and joy then why shouldn’t you put that in a building that warrants the same pride and joy?
“There is lots of glass in the design and they look really nice.
“A similar scheme we completed in Ollerton, Nottinghamshire was very well received.
“Also, with the flexibility of space we’ve created we will see businesses grow through the space so they have room to expand.”
Kellingley closed in 2015 and the former pit site covers 140 acres, potentially supporting 1.4m sq ft of development.
Mr O’Brien said: “As Kellingley was the last deep coal mine in the UK this site is particularly poignant for us.”It’s nice that we are the first people to develop property on that site.
“We are the catalyst of Kellingley and we hope that it will enable other developments to come forward within a few years.”
Unlike traditional developers CRT takes a percentage of the income generated from the site and invests it in social programmes, employment skills, help and well-being in the local area.
Mr O’Brien said: “Over a ten-year investment programme this could result in half-a-million pounds in social programmes.
“Other money goes back into the trust and is invested into other coalfield communities.”