Redeveloped business park changes hands

Fairfield Business Park in Penistone, Barnsley, has been sold in a multi-million pound deal.

Over the past two years, the previously unoccupied site has been fully developed by family-run, Barnsley-based property and land specialists, Fairbank Investments Ltd.

The fully-let park has been bought by international packaging business Neal Brothers, for a seven-figure sum. Neal Brothers is the main tenant on the site, running an export packaging business from its warehouse.

The park currently consists of 14 independent offices totalling 15,000 sq ft which are home to a range of independent businesses.

A further 66,000 sq ft of warehouse space has been occupied by Neal Brothers since late 2021.

Alex Sewell, of Fairbank Investments, said: “We are thrilled our vision to revitalise a local site of such historical importance has been fully realised and we have sold the business park as a thriving commercial hub, resulting in job creation and a bright future for the area.

“The legacy is an important one for the town following a few years of uncertainty but there is a diverse range of businesses on site, which have all created local employment opportunities and fully regenerated the area.”

The site of the current business park was originally opened by shipmaker Cammell Laird in the late 19th century. It was mothballed in 1930 but taken over by industrialist Sir David Brown in 1935.

Sir David established foundry, pumps and fabrication operations in Penistone which produced bullet-proof castings during the Second World War and later specialised in making pumps for the global oil and gas industry.

This manufacturing hub employed more than 1,500 people during its peak production period.

The historic former David Brown plant shut at the end of 2020 when owner SPX transferred its production processes to an alternative location, leading to job losses.

Fairbank Investments acquired the four-acre Green Road site after spotting its potential to create employment and restore economic prosperity to the town.

Joseph Green, of Fairbank Investments, added: “When the production facility closed in 2020 during the coronavirus pandemic, this resulted in widespread redundancies, and the future of the site in Penistone looked incredibly bleak.

“As a local family business in the area and living locally ourselves, we wanted to take positive action and restore the site to its former glory, fully benefiting the town and the local economy.

“We are incredibly proud and satisfied that we’ve achieved this objective and have left the business park in very secure and capable hands.

“We will watch with interest as the site continues to flourish and the businesses there go on to even greater success.”

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