Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove has seen at first hand how a £5.6 million Government investment is to kickstart the near £18 million restoration of a derelict mill in Marsden.

Mr Gove joined Colne Valley Tory MP Jason McCartney for a tour of the New Mills site in Brougham Road being created by commercial property specialists Dove Haigh Phillips.

In August last year Kirklees Council, with the support of Mr McCartney, submitted a bid for Levelling Up funds. The scheme initially failed to secure funding but, in a surprise boost, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt gave the green light in the Budget in March.

The £5.6 million will release a further £11.7 million in private sector funding.

The plans include retaining parts of the mill’s façade, protecting its heritage and history. The remainder of the building will be partially demolished to create a new, improved building to provide commercial units for existing and new businesses.

The scheme will allow local businesses to expand and stay local, and there will also be increased parking facilities for the village.

Once completed, the new development will include commercial units and office space, with a potential for residential units on the upper floors – all surrounded by beautiful landscaping and an attractive new courtyard.

The historic façade will remain a key feature and developers are working closely with Historic England.

Mr McCartney welcomed the scheme for the former Crowther’s Mill and said: “It’s a large site which has been disused for 20 years and this is a great opportunity to allow businesses to locate or relocate, provide some new homes and also provide parking, which is a problem in Marsden.

“I lobbied very hard for this funding and the Government recognised the value for money in how it leveraged private investment. It is the Government funding which makes the scheme financially viable.”

Work is still at an early stage and no planning application has been submitted. There are no timescales on when the development might start or be completed.

Mr McCartney said there had already been much interest from local businesses.

Clr Graham Turner, Kirklees Council’s Cabinet member for regeneration, added: “This project will boost the local economy in Marsden, allowing it to thrive.

“I am very pleased that we can move forward on this important scheme and know that the people of Marsden and beyond will benefit from having high quality facilities in the heart of the town.”