FINSLEY Gate Wharf in Burnley, known locally as Mile Wharf, is about to undergo a £2.2m restoration with work starting to transform the heritage buildings on site into a range of community amenities, including a café, bar, function room, overnight accommodation and education facilities.
The transformation will take around a year to complete with the Canal & River Trust, the national waterways and wellbeing charity, appointing contractors Rosslee Construction.
Thanks to £2.2m funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund and resources from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the Canal & River Trust is working with the future tenants of the site, Finsley Gate Wharf Ltd and architects, Donald Insall Associates, to transform the Grade II Listed buildings into a waterside destination. In use for over 200 years the site is steeped in local history and set to become a base from which to explore Burnley by water, foot or bike.
Opened in 1801, Mile Wharf, as it was known locally, was an important industrial hub for the north west and one of the oldest wharves on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal.
Ian Sprott, development surveyor at Canal & River Trust, said: “This is a giant step forward appointing the contractors to start physical restoration work. We are excited to see this important heritage site being transformed into an attractive visitor destination and a hub of activity for the local community.
“With the support of The National Heritage Lottery Fund, the European Regional Development Fund, Burnley Council, Finsley Gate Wharf Ltd and the local community, this promises to be an exciting space where people can learn about the local heritage and enjoy the fantastic wellbeing benefits of spending time on or near the water.”
Glenn Davidson and Lee Shepherd, directors at Finsley Gate Wharf Ltd, commented: “We look forward to the grand opening of this beautiful leisure facility located on the banks of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal. As well as supplying fantastic food and beverages for our visitors, we will also be hosting a large variety of events, activities and celebrations throughout the year. Finsley Gate Wharf is going to be a new and exciting focal point for Burnley residents and visitors alike.”
For more on the work of the Canal & River Trust and to find out how you can volunteer and donate to support our work visit www.canalrivertrust.org.uk
Enjoy more Towpath Talk reading in the monthly paper. Click here to subscribe.