Derelict corner of land to be transformed into creative business hub

Pollard Street

A derelict corner of land in Manchester is to be transformed into hub for artisan and creative businesses.

Fifty recycled shipping containers will sit on derelict brownfield land on Pollard Street East near to the Etihad Stadium, providing co-working and flexible business spaces after permission was secured by city-based planning and design consultancy, Barton Willmore.

The new business hub, called Pollard Yard, will create nearly 8,000 sq ft of space for small-scale artisan crafts people and industries for a period of up to five years as part of the ‘meanwhile use’ consent granted by planners from Manchester City Council.

‘Meanwhile use’ refers to the short-term use of temporarily empty buildings such as shops until they can be brought back into commercial use.

It takes a potential problem and turns it into an opportunity and helps keep an area vibrant.

Barton Willmore Planning Associate, Nicole Roe said: “This is a very exciting initiative that brings a new type of flexible and affordable work space to the city centre. The highly accessible site will provide sustainable, low cost work spaces, supporting our smaller scale creative businesses and entrepreneurial minds.

“Now permission has been granted, the development will prevent the currently vacant brownfield land falling into further disrepair and could also kick off the wider regeneration of Holt Town. An all-round win for Manchester.”

As well as delivering Planning support to help the project secure permission, Barton Willmore also provided Architecture and Heritage services.

Fred David Wyatt, founder of Meanwhile Creative which is behind the site, added: “We are over the moon to have the green light, and delighted with the full backing and confidence from Manchester City Council in what will be the first project of its kind, possibly anywhere in the world.

“We love Manchester and we’ve been overwhelmed with the interest and positivity so it’s massively exciting for us to be able to kick things off, and most importantly move in our first tenants who have been patiently waiting to get cracking with their own projects and creations.”

Meanwhile, Creative’s current businesses in Bristol and Cardiff supports more than 250 creative businesses and start-ups. They support the creative and entrepreneurial minds of Bristol, Cardiff and Manchester by establishing lively places to work in the heart of cities.