Mills will be ‘creative flagship for the North’ bringing jobs

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The company planning to turn Rutland Mills into a creative arts centre with hotel and restaurants held a networking event in the city this week.

Tileyard Studios staged the free event on Wednesday, as it prepares to submit a planning application, setting out its proposals for the historic mills, which date back to the 1800s.

Design image showing what Rutland Mills could look like. Produced by Hawkins\Brown working with City and Provincial Properties PLC

Design image showing what Rutland Mills could look like. Produced by Hawkins\Brown working with City and Provincial Properties PLC

A presentation outlining the vision for the site was made as part of the day, which brought together professionals in the arts, technology and creative industries.

The event, called Future Creativity at Rutland Mills, came 18 months after Wakefield Council revealed it had agreed to sell the derelict mills to Tileyard’s parent company City and Provincial Properties.

Contracts were exchanged this May and work is now progressing towards the completion of the sale, which is expected by the end of the year.

Paul Kempe, Director of City and Provincial Properties, said “Tileyard has become one of the biggest creative hubs in Europe.

“We are excited that Wakefield will be our Tileyard flagship for the North where we look forward to transforming Rutland Mills into a vibrant destination for creative and collaborative partnerships.”

The mills will be turned into ‘Tileyard North’, a creative centre for the music, film, television, design and media industries, providing up to 1,000 new jobs.

Council leader Coun Peter Box said: “I am delighted they have chosen Wakefield and Rutland Mills as the site for Tileyard North, to create a hub and turn the city into a centre for cultural industries.

“This week’s event will support the drive to attract investment, bring new jobs and help to boost the local economy by transforming the waterfront into a vibrant area of the city.”

The ‘Future Creativity at Rutland Mills event included talks, panels and networking opportunities for people involved in or interested in music, film, television, design, art, games and digital arts.

Businesses and professionals across Wakefield and the wider Yorkshire region, as well as members of the community, attended.

Companies and speakers involved included Dave Beer, Michael Harwood, Leeds University, Backstage Academy, Game Republic, Arts Council England and DMF Digital.