A REPORT has been published into the potential of modernising mills for homes and workplaces across Bury.

Historic England says the equivalent of 154 football pitches could accommodate thousands of jobs and homes, including in more deprived areas.

Bury North MP James Daly said: “My constituents regard our local mills with intense pride as symbols of their ancestors’ graft and world-leading innovation that powered the industrial revolution. Our culture has been shaped by the people who lived their lives in and around our mills.

“This remarkable new research shows that our rich industrial heritage can now help us address a number of today’s challenges, whether this is by providing homes such as the former Woodhill Mill, now Wharfside in Bury, or workspaces for new businesses, and all in a way which helps us meet our net zero commitments.”

Woodhill Mill was successfully converted into Wharfside to make way for 51 new modern apartments within walking distance of Bury town centre.

Catherine Dewar, Historic England’s North West regional director said: “The mills of the north are such an important part of our history, culture and landscape.

“These amazing buildings and sites can accommodate wonderful homes, workplaces and cultural spaces.

“Special places where the history and character shines through.”

Research and surveys by property consultants, Cushman and Wakefield suggest there is potential for vacant textile mills to give social and financial value for economically challenged communities in Bury.

The company believes that if all the mills across Greater Manchester and Pennine Lancashire were repurposed for commercial use, the 84,000 jobs accommodated could generate in the region of £3bn of gross value for local economies.

Historic England is a public body dedicated to preserving the nation’s cultural heritage and historical environment, including beaches, battlefields and parks.

The report, Driving Northern Growth Through Repurposing Historic Mills, was presented to the Northern Culture All Party Parliamentary Group.