Former care home site could accommodate an enterprise centre
Proposals for a new Enterprise Centre at Ferney Lee Road, in Todmorden, will be considered at the next meeting of Calderdale Council’s Cabinet on 7 August 2023.
Senior councillors will be asked to approve an asset transfer of the council owned land to the Calder Valley Community Land Trust (CVCLT) at no cost, for the development of the Enterprise Centre, one of eight projects funded through the Todmorden Town Deal.
The project, which is sponsored by CVCLT, will be developed using £3.8m from the Towns Fund.
When completed the Enterprise Centre will offer modern facilities for small and start-up businesses, as well as more established enterprises in affordable workspaces, linking with schools and Tod College to offer opportunities for the town’s young people to develop their skills and experience in professional sectors.
It will also include the creation of some affordable rented homes.
Land owned by the council on Rose Street was previously allocated for the centre. However the Environment Agency warned the risk of flooding at the proposed site could not be mitigated, so this option is no longer viable.
The council instead identified the site of the former Ferney Lee Care Home as the most suitable for the centre, which will provide a combination of commercial offices and housing.
Councillor Sarah Courtney, council cabinet member for towns, tourism and the voluntary sector, said: “The Enterprise Centre is a vital part of the Todmorden Town Deal programme which will help support local businesses and give opportunities to our young people to ensure Todmorden continues to thrive.
“While the Ferney Lee site was not part of the original programme this offers a really good compromise.
“It’s still a central location close to local businesses and it frees up the land adjacent to our public realm scheme in Bramsche Square bringing additional environmental and wellbeing benefits.”
Pam Warhurst, chair, Todmorden Town Deal Board, said: “The vision for a new hub for start-ups and enterprise in Todmorden, including the creation of some affordable rented accommodation, remains a top priority for the Board, so we are pleased the Ferney Lee site may offer the potential to realise this ambition.
“We aim to support the creation of better employment and skills development opportunities for local people, especially our younger residents, and the Enterprise Centre project is a key part of our strategy to achieve this.”
Simon Brearley, chair, Calder Valley Community Land Trust, said: “Our view is that a new energy efficient enterprise centre has the potential to support Todmorden to thrive and be more resilient.
“In addition, we and our members are motivated by the opportunity to develop much needed affordable rented accommodation in our town as part of this scheme.
“We remain open to exploring other site options for an Enterprise Centre and housing.”