Transformation of Colne shopping arcade complete

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A BUILDING which was a blight on Colne town centre for years reopened on Monday, following a major makeover.

Shackleton Hall, a Grade 2 listed building in Church Street, had been largely empty for many years and had fallen into disrepair, causing it to be placed on English Heritage’s At Risk Register.

But thanks to a project between Housing Pendle, the borough’s biggest social landlord and PEARL2, the joint venture partnership between Barnfield Investment Properties and Pendle Council, the building has undergone a transformation, changed from a derelict structure to an impressive feature along the main street in to town.

In less than a year, the building has been regenerated using the latest green technology, while maintaining some of its original features.

The exterior has also been upgraded, as well as creating 11 retail/office suites in the adjoining retail arcade, in keeping with the town’s Victorian architecture.

Businesses including Pendle Community Credit Union have already agreed a lease on two of the retail units in the arcade and others are in negotiation.

Housing Pendle moved into its new offices from nearby Colne Town Hall on Monday, and executive director Ian Clark was delighted to get the keys to a new home.

He said: “The regeneration of Shackleton Hall is a win/win for the people of the borough.

“Not only will our customers have a one-stop shop to access all our services, but a beautiful building has been brought back into use and the local economy will benefit from a new range of shops in the arcade.

“The transformation has been nothing short of remarkable and our staff are looking forward to working in a modern and fantastic new office.”

Gareth Smith, head of regeneration at Barnfield Construction, added: “This has been a real opportunity to bring back to life a real building of stature that is close to the hearts of many people in and around Pendle.

“Through hard work and determination, we have achieved real regeneration and have proved PEARL2 is hugely successful and capable of tackling the most difficult of projects.

“In a relatively short period of time, we have taken a derelict building and transformed this Grade 2 listed building into a sustainable business and retail location.”

Brian Cookson, director (regeneration), for Pendle Council, who sits on the PEARL2 board: said: “It’s great to see a once ramshackle building being restored to the historic landmark we can all be proud of.

“Housing Pendle now has a fantastic new base and the arcade is currently being brought back to life and will include new shops, offices and a bistro.

“PEARL2 is proving to be a really successful mechanism for tackling difficult projects such as this, and I am really pleased that, after a lot of hard work, such an excellent end result has been achieved.”