Skelmersdale transformation given go-ahead
Planning consent has been granted for the transformation of Skelmersdale town centre bringing new retail and leisure facilities to the town and creating in excess of 500 jobs.Comprehensive proposals for a significant expansion of Skelmersdale town centre have been developed by St Modwen in partnership with West Lancashire Borough Council and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA).
The planning consent is for the regeneration of the land between the new college and the existing town centre, which is currently undeveloped and in need of investment.The plans will bring forward a mixed use scheme incorporating around 100,000 sq ft of space. This will include 50,000 sq ft of retail to widen the scope of choice in the centre, as well as 50,000 sq ft of leisure such as a cinema, restaurants and bars to introduce a new night time leisure opportunity and economy to the town.
There will be extensive improvements to the public realm as part of the proposals, including a new high street between the college and the existing town centre and public art, as well as enhancements to the public areas outside the library and Nye Bevan Leisure Centre.Paul Batho, projects director at St Modwen, said: "This is the right outcome and great news for the people of Skelmersdale and for the town's long term economy. Our scheme will transform the town centre, bringing essential retail and leisure, significant investment and new jobs, providing multiple benefits for the entire community. We are looking forward, with our partners and confirmed anchor tenant Reel Cinema, to getting started on site to bring this much anticipated scheme to fruition."
St Modwen has been working in partnership with the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and West Lancashire Borough Council since 2007 for the delivery of a comprehensive regeneration scheme in Skelmersdale town centre. Councillor Martin Forshaw, West Lancashire Borough Council portfolio holder for planning and development, said: “I am pleased that the council’s planning committee has resolved to grant planning permission for the St Modwen scheme. The regeneration of Skelmersdale town centre, of which this proposal forms a significant part, will bring huge benefits to everyone in West Lancashire, not just those living in the town.”