Historic mill estate set for new chapter as regeneration plans get the go-ahead

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ABOUT 600 jobs could be created after Leeds Council gave the go-ahead for an historic mill estate which was once the home of Emmerdale and Heartbeat to be transformed.

Owners and directors John and William Gaunt have invested £4m in Sunny Bank Mills in Farsley over the last six years to regenerate the 10-acre site.

Now Leeds planners have given the go ahead to the multi-million pound remodelling and regeneration of the rest of the Mill estate, which comprises 210,000 sq ft of mixed use development offering space for 600 sustainable jobs. John Gaunt said: “The decision by Leeds planners to support this new phase of regeneration is tremendous news, not just for us but for the economy of Farsley, Pudsey and the surrounding area. It’s exciting for the village, and it’s a huge privilege for us.

“We have already created 250 jobs at Sunny Bank Mills, with more than 50 companies on site.

“This next phase, which will be developed over the next few years, will create many more and regenerate these buildings. We now have the flexibility, time and confidence to deliver a sustainable future for Sunny Bank Mills.”

The Sunny Bank Mills complex has been owned by the Gaunt family for nearly two centuries.

William Gaunt said: “We believe very strongly that we must preserve the legacy of Sunny Bank Mills for future generations.

“We have retained and refurbished existing historic buildings such as Sandsgate and the 1912 Mill, where Yorkshire Television filmed Emmerdale and Heartbeat, to create new jobs and make Sunny Bank Mills the economic powerhouse of Farsley once again.”