Talbot Mill - End of an Era

Date: 26th October 2018
Author: Paul Partington
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From it’s original construction date thought to be in the mid 1850’s, Talbot Mill was a hive of industry in the Cornbrook area of Manchester. Originally a cotton mill that provided a workplace for both adults and children, some as young as 5 years old, the property has evolved over the years and been home to a variety of businesses. Textile related companies flourished there in the 1930’s but as time has moved on, there have been a variety of other uses at Talbot. During the 1980’s there was even a mushroom farm operating from the property, which was probably the only farm that could claim to be in a Central Manchester location at that point in time. More recently, there has been a thriving artistic community but it has also been the setting for a film production and photoshoots.

In one way or another, Roger Hannah & Co have had a long association with Talbot Mill. Our very own Andrew Bradburn became involved in the management in 1974, when occupiers were paying a rent of 30p per square foot! Much of the upper floor space was vacant due to a lull in demand and void rates charges threatened the Mill’s very existence. Thankfully such charges were avoided by simply bricking up the empty units but that wouldn’t be advised as a successful strategy these days. Had avoidance of the void rates not been possible, the likelihood is that Talbot would have been demolished prior to the  conservation area status. Andrew’s involvement ceased in 1985 but a Roger Hannah client purchased Talbot in 2000 and he picked up the management again! To his surprise the first tenant to go into the upper floors was still operating a successful business from there, repairing and servicing vacuum pumps.

We managed the property on behalf of our client for a number of years, until such time that Capital & Centric purchased it in 2016. There had been a lot of redevelopment on Ellesmere Street so it came as no surprise that there was an intention to undertake a scheme at Talbot Mill and we were delighted to be retained as the managing agent. The next two years involved a programme to deliver vacant possession for our client, which was a difficult and sensitive project. A number of the people operating out of the property had been there for many years and they were a close community that had roots established so irrespective of the inevitability of the need to relocate, for many it was an emotional process. Our client was supportive of this and visited the property to meet everyone and discuss timescales well in advance of their plans. They were adamant that any revisions in timescales were communicated promptly and did everything they could to allow the maximum amount of time that businesses could remain in the building.

Current look of Castlefield around Talbot Mill - Manchester City Centre is just a stones throw away.

This is one artists impression of the redevelopment project taking place in Castlefield over the coming years

...as you can see the regenerated Talbot Mill will be a welcomed addition to the area.

The final occupiers moved out recently and the next phase of Talbot Mill’s life has now begun. Strip out works have commenced and the proposals look extremely impressive, with many of the original features being retained. Whilst we are sorry to see the management instruction end, we are also excited to see Capital & Centric’s plans turn into reality.

If you’re interested in one of the new 200 apartments to be available at this historic site, visit https://talbotmcr.com/ where Capital & Centric will keep you updated on everything to do with Talbot Mill.




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Paul Partington Director of Property Management