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December '63 (Oh What A Night)

Future of Dalton Mill still uncertain after fire earlier this year

Thursday, 22 December 2022 21:48

By Chris Young, Local Democracy Reporter

The current state of a fire-ravaged Keighley mill has been described as “tragic” – but work is underway to find a new future for the listed building.

On 3rd March this year, a huge blaze began in Grade II listed Dalton Mill, a building that was home to several businesses and has been used in the filming of shows including Peaky Blinders and Downton Abbey.

The building’s roof, along with most of the interior was destroyed. However, inspections of what remains carried out by Bradford Council and Historic England found that the building did not pose a danger of collapse.

But months after the blaze the future of the building is still uncertain.

The issue was raised at a meeting of Bradford Council last week, when Keighley Councillor Caroline Firth asked what the latest was on the mill – which she described as one of the town’s “heritage gems.”

A response from the Council Executive said revealed that the building had recently changed hands, but that the authority was still looking at how it could support the restoration of Dalton Mills.

The response said: “The Council recognises the importance of Dalton Mills both to Keighley and the District.

“Officers are keen to engage with the owners of the mill complex to explore the options to secure long-term future of the buildings and as well as the short-term stabilisation and safety of the site.

“However, there have been recent changes of ownership which are limiting immediate discussions.

“At the same time the Council is engaging Historic England to explore what support they can access.”

Cllr Firth added: “Can we ensure the officers will liaise with the new owners of the building? The potential of Dalton Mills is huge.”

Councillor Alex Ross Shaw, Executive for Regeneration, planning and Highways, said: “It is a magnificent building, and it is tragic site to see it in its current state.

“There is a lot of regeneration going on in Keighley, and this area is very much in the forefront of our minds.

“Hopefully the building gets a settled ownership and we can go from there.”

The regeneration mentioned in Cllr Ross Shaw’s response includes a number of industrial developments in the town centre.

Plans to build 6,700 square metres of industrial space on the nearby Universal Mills site on Dalton Lane were submitted to Bradford Council earlier this year.

And plans for another industrial development on the corner of Dalton Lane and Bradford Road was approved last year.

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