‘First step towards a transformation of Castleford’

P.& C. Aerial Pictures.'Hicksons.
P.& C. Aerial Pictures.'Hicksons.

The first step in the ‘transformation of Castleford’ has been secured after councillors approved plans to demolish the former Nestle factory.

The Express revealed in August that plans to build an ‘energy park’ on the site of the former Hickson and Welch chemical plant, and the Nestle site, had been scrapped to make way for hundreds of new homes.

Now, planning bosses at Wakefield Council have granted site owners Castleford Energy Village Plc permission to demolish the former Nestle site on Wheldon Road.

David Frohnsdorff, the company’s manager and shareholder, said: “The demolition of Nestle is the first part of this plan. It’s like phase one of up to seven phases of work along the Wheldon Road site.

“The first phase is to demolish the buildings and get the sites cleaned up and ready for housing developments.”

He added: “We are now in the process of engaging with a number of government funded planning schemes to try and get the remediation work of the site off and running.”

Mr Frohnsdorff said the whole scheme, which would see development of 172 acres of land on the two sites, could be complete within five years, subject to planning permission.

He also said the company aimed to develop Bridge Foot roundabout as part of the scheme.

He added: “Over the next ten years this will be a completely different part of Castleford. The location is fantastic. The Wheldon Road corridor is a great site for housing and I think, once complete, it’s going to be great.”

Castleford councillor Denise Jeffery said: “It’s great news that these plans are moving forward. We have waited a long time to get to this stage.

“It’s part of the masterplan for bringing regeneration to Castleford and if we can get people living in Castleford and spending money in the town - that’s real regeneration.”