Sunny outlook as five new deals are completed at historic Yorkshire mill

Five new office deals have been completed at Sunny Bank Mills, the iconic Yorkshire mill complex between Leeds and Bradford, where YTV’s Emmerdale and Heartbeat were filmed.

Sunny Bank Mills has welcomed Seven Districts Coffee, The Hip Store, Brainstorm, ACD&B, and White Rose Training

Seven Districts Coffee, The Hip Store, Brainstorm, ACD&B and White Rose Training have all moved into new offices at the refurbished mill in Farsley.

During the past 10 years Sunny Bank Mills, one of the most famous family-owned mills in Yorkshire, has been transformed into a modern office, retail and leisure complex. It is now home to more than 75 companies, which employ a total of 400 staff.

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These five deals come hard on the heels of a raft of significant office, retail and leisure lettings at Sunny Bank Mills during the past few weeks.

John Gaunt, joint managing director of Edwin Woodhouse, the owner of Sunny Bank Mills, said: “These five deals are excellent examples of quality businesses being attracted to a quality business environment.

"The versatility and flexibility of space here is attracting an exciting breadth of occupiers.

“We are especially pleased to welcome our new occupiers to Sunny Bank Mills as we emerge from a very challenging year. There is now a degree of optimism within the Yorkshire business community and these new deals reflect this. We are really excited to play our part in the continuing prosperity of our new tenants."

Isaac Stott of Seven Districts Coffee explained that the speciality coffee roaster company chose Sunny Bank Mills because “it is a really creative, exciting place, with a great community".

“Our business has been steadily growing over the last year, even during lockdown, and we now need a hub for our core team to meet, plan and continue to build momentum. Sunny Bank Mills is the perfect spot to give us this space, with lots of other interesting and growing businesses, providing the chance for sharing ideas and collaborations and simply being inspired.

“Alongside this, we’ve bumped into William and John Gaunt, the managing directors, as they go about the mills, fixing, mending and planning how to renovate, grow and develop this site.

"Their commitment speaks lots about how there really is a genuine community here, and how the Gaunts are invested in making the mills something to be proud of."

James Trivunovic of independent boutique Hip Store, which is relocating from opposite Kirkgate Market in Leeds city centre, said: “We were looking for a space outside of Leeds city centre where we could have a more relaxed and considered approach to working post-Covid.

"Our business is built on a 35-year history within clothing retail in Leeds, so where better to have a HQ than in an amazing reconditioned textile mill?

“I have seen Farsley and the surrounding area transform itself over the last four to five years into an amazing community space and creative hub. Here we have the ideal mix of creating content within the space we work in, coupled with our global audience seeing the real authenticity of the Hip brand first hand. Our business is completely based on community and curation.

“William Gaunt has been great at helping us find the best space to accommodate an office (for buying and merchandising) and studio (brand and creative) all within one floor/building. We have been searching for over 12 months for the perfect space within the mill complex.

“We are consolidating all of our teams from across three locations in Leeds, Bury and South Manchester into one beautiful space where we can work as one unit.

"We were established in 1987 as one tiny store in the Thornton’s Arcade in Leeds selling niche and top-tier clothing brands. We now have two large physical stores in Leeds and Nottingham, with one more coming by the end of 2021.

"By the end of this year we will have grown into footwear, lifestyle, homewares and women’s products. Our ambition is to be the best modern lifestyle store in the UK, curated for our customers."

Chris Parkinson of ACD&B added: “To see Yorkshire’s old mills re-purposed for the modern day is really inspiring and, with the diverse mix of businesses and galleries within the Mill, Sunny Bank was just a perfect fit for us.”

Sarah-Jayne Lishman of Leeds-based property consultancy, Dove Haigh Phillips, which is marketing Sunny Banks Mills, said: “The owners of Sunny Bank Mills took the brave decision to invest heavily in their mill and this decision has paid dividends.

“This is one of the most significant mill regeneration projects in Yorkshire. Steeped in history and with massive potential, Sunny Bank Mills is now one of the prime business locations in the West Leeds area.”