Posted by: dianesims | March 10, 2017

10 things you should know about the proposed demolition of Newsome Mill

Say no to demolition

Not sure whether to object to the demolition of Newsome Mill? Here are 10 important things that you should know:

 

1. What’s happening?

The owner is proposing to demolish the entire ground floor of Newsome Mill, along with the weaving sheds at the corner of Hart Street. As the buildings are Grade II Listed, they cannot be demolished unless Kirklees Council grants permission (this is called Listed Building Consent). The owner has applied for this consent, and a public consultation has opened to give people a chance to comment.

2. When is it happening?

The public consultation is only open for three weeks – it closes on Tuesday 21st March 2017, so if you want to comment, you need to do it before then.

3. Who can take part in the consultation?

It’s an open public consultation. It’s really important for Newsome residents to take part. But many other people have a connection to Newsome Mill, such as people who grew up in Newsome and still have family here, people who worked in the mill or had family who did, and those who went to school in Newsome. It’s your heritage too – anyone who is interested in Newsome Mill is entitled to comment. Both national and local heritage organisations and campaigners will also be commenting.

4. Can we keep our mill?

It’s important to recognise that the former four-storey mill, the weaving sheds and Newsome’s iconic clock tower are all part of the main building at Newsome Mill. They were designed and built as a single structure, in the 1880s. The building is contemporary with other surviving buildings on the mill site, such as the Coach House. This means that the buildings have value as a coherent group, and Historic England say this is an important consideration. Despite the terrible damage, the building is still recognisable as a mill and is still Grade II Listed. It’s still here and could have a future.

5. What happened to the weaving sheds?

The weaving sheds at the corner of Hart Street were not damaged by the fire, but by the demolition company. Kirklees Council did not give consent for the demolition of the wall along Ruth Street, which forms part of the main wall of Newsome Mill.

6. What will happen to the clock tower?

Although the owner’s proposal does not ask for specific consent to demolish the clock tower, it also does not seek permission to make the tower watertight and secure. Huddersfield Civic Society say that the wording of the application does not offer sufficient reassurance that the tower will be retained. We believe that opposing the demolition is the best way to protect the tower in the longer term.

7. Are the buildings structurally sound?

Kirklees Council made a public statement on Friday 25th November 2016 saying that “the tower does not form a health and safety risk and whilst requiring some work it most certainly does not require demolition.” We have also had confirmation from Kirklees Council that they consider all the remaining buildings to currently be structurally sound. Historic England have said that there is no justification for demolishing the buildings.

8. Can the buildings be reused?

We believe that all the buildings on the site can – and should – be reused. Newsome-born architect Richard Hannay has designed his own scheme for the site, showing how the remaining buildings might be re-used. We’ve used these suggestions as a way of gathering feedback from our community about what people would like to see on the site now.

9. Why does it matter for Newsome?

Newsome Mills is at the heart of Newsome – both geographically and historically. The village has grown around the mill, which was the main local employer for a long time. Many families who live in Newsome today have a direct relationship to Newsome Mills. Since the fire, we have seen an outpouring of affection for our mill, and a growing aspiration to regenerate the site in a way that creates a fitting future for local residents, whilst conserving our heritage and local identity. We want to make sure that those voices are heard in the current consultation, and in whatever happens next.

10. Why does it matter for Huddersfield?

Our mill played an important part in the textile heritage of Huddersfield and West Yorkshire. Historic England say that it is significant. The Victorian Society have previously included Newsome Mill in their list of the Top Ten Endangered Victorian Buildings in the country. Huddersfield Civic Society have said that our landmark clock tower is “a very significant feature of the setting of Huddersfield, second only to the Victoria Jubilee Tower on Castle Hill, and must be preserved.”

If you’d like our mill to be part of our future as well as our past, please object to the proposed demolition of Newsome Mill.


Take part in the public consultation now

Join us in opposing the demolition of our mill:

Object online to the demolition of Newsome Mill

(up to 500 words)

Or email your comments to DC.Admin@kirklees.gov.uk

(no word limit)

Please quote reference 2017/90377. You must comment before 21st March 2017.

Deadline now extended to Friday 31st March 2017.


 

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