New owners plan new lease of life for Clarence Dock

New era beckons at Clarence Dock. Photograph by Southpaw2305, used under creative commons license

Plans to revitalise a Hunslet waterside development have been unveiled by developers.

As reported by South Leeds Life earlier this month, a new strategy for the ‘Brigadoon’ that is Clarence Dock in Hunslet is aiming to turn the area into a home for independent traders, restaurants and digital businesses

Property firm Allied London, which has bought a 150-year lease to Clarence Dock, yesterday told assembled press that it planned to bring life back to an area where 28 of the site’s 35 restaurant and retail units are empty. Some locals have branded the area a ghost town, which is poorly connected to the rest of south Leeds and the city centre.

Allied London plans to create a new shopping, food and cafe street and a “workspace hub” for the creative and digital industries alongside a space for concerts and theatre were also planned.

It will invest up to £10m and says the area, which houses the Royal Armouries, could employ 1,000 people.

Historically, of course, the area was part of Hunslet’s rich industrial heritage. Originally the area was constructed for the transportation of goods and commodities on barges to and from Leeds city centre, using the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and the Aire and Calder Navigation. Like the Middleton Steam Railway it was primarily used to bring coal from the collieries around Rothwell and Wakefield to supply the heavy industry in Hunslet and business and commerce in Leeds city centre.

It was revealed yesterday that the site will revert to its original name of New Dock, by which the area was known from its opening in 1843.

The dock plans would take between three to five years to be fully implemented but some elements could be in place by summer 2014.

What do you think? Have your say in the comments below.

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2 Replies to “New owners plan new lease of life for Clarence Dock”

    1. Thanks for your comment Pencred.

      I agree – all the investment in the world won’t help it unless there’s better access both from the city centre and the rest of south Leeds.

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