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20 June 2022


A RAPIDLY growing Lancashire business, Kingswood Homes, is set to transform a fire ravaged former pub into its new headquarters after being given the green light by Chorley Council.

Having increased its workforce by two thirds since 2019, Kingswood has outgrown its current base at Little Hoole. The company submitted plans (application 21/01473/FULMAJ) to demolish the derelict former Grill and Grain, at the Boatyard, near Houghton, and build a new office in its place. The plans were unanimously approved by the planning committee and are now subject to sign off by the secretary of state.

New office

Managing director Paul Jones said: “We’ve grown our workforce by 66% since 2019 and now directly employ 50 people. When we started looking for a new home to accommodate the growing team, we ruled out taking out a lease on a characterless business park and instead decided we wanted something that would fit the culture and ethos of the company. The former Grill and Grain, which we acquired from Thwaites Brewery, presented the perfect opportunity to create a bespoke building. Much more than simply somewhere we can base our staff, its location is within easy reach of our core areas of operation meaning it will become a central hub to support the customer journey.

“As with the homes we build, we’ve thought carefully about the design of the building and the local area. For example, reflecting the canalside location, the new office will mimic a typical ‘boatshed’ with a simple form and shallow pitched roof, while a black timber finish creates a more industrial, weathered look against the dark greenery of the dense woodland behind.”

With easy access from across Kingswood’s core area of operation, including the flagship Green Hills development in Feniscowles, the new 12,000 sq ft office will include a virtual reality suite, where home buyers will be able to use gaming-style technology to ‘experience’ the layouts of Kingswood’s homes.

There will be a communal meeting area and private pods for staff to work from, with stunning views across the Leeds-Liverpool Canal to Houghton.

Parking will be provided within the site and integrated with a landscaping scheme to soften the development and enhance the site’s appearance, with additional car parking to be provided for the adjoining marina.

Work is expected to start in early 2023, with the homebuilder due to relocate from its current base in Little Hoole to its new home in 2024.

The company owns its current base in Little Hoole, which will be released for sale in mid-2023.

Kingswood Homes is currently building at Green Hills in Feniscowles, The Hawthorns in Elswick, Lancashire, and at The Market Quarter in Hatherleigh, Devon. The company also has plans for new homes in the Lancashire village of Hoddlesden.

The SME homebuilder has gifted a property at Green Hills to Derian House Children’s Hospice for the Great Big House Giveaway.