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Mill Conversions: The UK’s Favourite Office Space?

Mill Conversions: The UK’s Favourite Office Space?

Grade II listed mill conversion in Bollington, near Macclesfield’s UK head office is a Grade II listed former cotton mill in Fazeley, a small Staffordshire town that was once the home of Conservative leader and 1834 Prime Minister, Sir Robert Peel. joins thousands of other companies across the UK that reside in former working mills. Perhaps it is the industrial roots of the properties that appeal to today’s modern businesses? Or the solid square-set infrastructure? Or maybe it’s the typically spacious and well-lit areas inside that provides such sought-after office space?

There are many obvious benefits of locating your business in a former mill building, and as a result, many of these icons of the British industrial landscape now provide serviced office space of a high and professional standard.

Below are a selection of mill buildings currently in use as serviced offices, located throughout the counties of Cumbria, Cheshire, Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire.

Cumbria – Carlisle

Located a few miles east of Carlisle, the second most northerly city in England, is Warwick Bridge – a small rural village which is home to a former working textile mill dating back to the 18th century.

This superb property retains many period features from its industrial past, which brought jobs and prosperity to an area otherwise only associated with farming and agriculture.

Production continued well into the 1970s, when recession forced the closure of the mill. But following careful restoration alongside the National Trust and Carlisle City Council conservation, it now has a second lease of life as a serviced office business centre, and work is on-going to redevelop areas of the site such as the mill’s original water turbine. This will not only provide a rare working model for local enthusiasts, but also a form of sustainable energy for the site.

This Carlisle business centre offers boasts attractive wooden floors, traditional exposed beams and large windows, characteristic of working mills, that floods the interior with plenty of natural light.

Cheshire – Congleton

Congleton, originally thought to have been a Roman settlement, has a long industrial history. Starting in 1272, King Edward I reportedly granted permission to build a mill, and the town soon became a centre of textile production of lace, leather and silk.

A mill built for the manufacture of cigars was built in Congleton in the early 1900s, and today this attractive property has been carefully restored to become serviced office space, with many superb features on show including large arched windows, wooden beams and exposed brickwork.

Cheshire – Macclesfield

A few miles north of Congleton is Macclesfield, a market town and former industrial hub which specialised in the production of silk. Many impressive mill buildings in and around the city have since been restored and redeveloped for alternative use, such as two buildings in nearby Bollington which are now serviced office business centres.

One Grade II listed office property in Bollington, which provides five floors of space offering anything from 500 sq ft to 24,000 sq ft, sits on the banks of the canal and offers a huge selection of modern amenities, ranging from high-speed internet access to an on-site café and even a gymnasium.

A mill building on Nursery Street in Sheffield

Another Grade II listed property located on nearby Clarence Road, which is operated as serviced office space under the same management group, has also been fully refurbished and provides extensive space which can be adapted and tailored to suit individual business requirements.


The picturesque county of Yorkshire is famous for its vibrant cities, pretty villages and rolling countryside. With a modern history steeped in manufacture and industry, specifically in the production of coal, textile and steel, the landscape of major cities such as Sheffield, Huddersfield and Leeds are dotted with superb examples of architecture that have been proudly refurbished as emblems of the countyΓÇÖs industrial past.

Yorkshire – Sheffield

Sheffield, located in South Yorkshire, provides a superb range of serviced office space located within former mill buildings. One example is an impressive six storey 1861 flour mill on Nursery Street, built on the site of the former nursery gardens of Sheffield Castle.

Period features such as cast iron columns and solid timber beams are just two of several architectural features retained at the property.

Yorkshire – Huddersfield

North-West of Sheffield, located a mile outside of Huddersfield city centre, is a converted woollen mill on Luck Lane offering up to 20,000 sq ft of modern, refurbished serviced office space, with workshop, light industrial space and storage premises also available.

In keeping with many mill buildings in the area, the property offers contemporary, unbranded office space along with extensive on-site car parking and modern amenities such as broadband internet.

Yorkshire – Leeds

North-East of Huddersfield is the popular metropolitan city of Leeds, once the heart of industry and manufacture in North Yorkshire, and now arguably the UK’s main business hub outside of London.

Maintaining a nod to its industrial past, in which Leeds flourished in the production of wool and flax, leading to printing, engineering, chemicals and clothing manufacture in the early 19th century, the city has a vast range of historical mill buildings – many of which have been carefully restored and converted into office use.

One such example is a striking Grade II listed office building on Castleton Close, located right next to the Leeds Liverpool Canal just off the A58M.

Another is a four-storey former mill building in Leeds centre that was converted for office use over 20 years ago. The property is located on Sovereign Street and offers an excellent base for businesses seeking flexible office space, with key amenities including a staffed reception, on-site IT support and broadband access.

Nottinghamshire – Nottingham

Known as The Lace City, Nottingham became famous for the production of lace and textiles during the Industrial Revolution, although it is perhaps more well-known for its links with the Robin Hood legend.

Today, Nottingham is a vibrant University city with an economy that has progressively changed from industry and manufacture to one based largely in the business services sector.

Historic buildings such as this attractive former Victorian textile mill, located in New Basford in the North of the city, have been transformed to become engaging and supportive business communities, offering serviced space in a modern and flexible environment.


These examples of traditional mill buildings, which have all been converted into serviced office centres, typically share many characteristics that form the recognisable architecture of the UK’s industrial heritage.

Key features such as large windows, cast-iron pillars, exposed wooden beams, winding staircases and strong square lines have survived the test of time, and now provide a popular and flexible base for businesses of all shapes and sizes.

For more information about these buildings, or to enquire about serviced office space in any location across the UK, search online at


Author: | August 13, 2010 | 0 Comments

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