Businesses worry over mill’s future

Oyston Mill
Oyston Mill
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A landmark mill is up for sale just three years after plans were unveiled to convert it into luxury apartments.

Oyston Mill in Preston has been put on the market by owner Owen Oyston, leaving more than a dozen business tenants uncertain about their future in the four storey building.

The mill, which was once the administrative headquarters of Blackpool Football Club, is being offered as a “development opportunity” at an undisclosed price. But one tenant, whose business has been based at Oyston Mill for 15 years, said: “No-one knows what the future holds for tenants in the building. If it is sold then there’s every likelihood everyone will have to move out.”

The property is being offered by a commercial estate agents with “vacant possession if desired.” One tenant, whose model shop has been on the market for four years, said the uncertain future was preventing a sale going through.

“We’ve got someone very interested, but understandably they want to know what the Oystons are doing with the building before they commit. We’re all up in the air. It’s a difficult situation and all we can do is take every day as it comes.

“I spoke to Owen Oyston recently and he told me there was nothing in the offing at the moment. But he said even if something did happen it would be at least a year before things go through.”

Oyston Mill was built before the First World War as a lampworks. It was owned by English Electric, Dick, Kerr Ltd, Siemens, AEI and Thorn Lighting. Plans were passed in March 2014 for conversion to 125 residential apartments with parking for 113 cars.