Work to build Fleetwood’s new food and fish facility on Fleetwood Dock is now complete.
The building was officially handed over to Wyre Council on 10 August 2022 and work can now start to move in the new tenants.
The ‘Neptune Food and Fish Processing Park’, located on Fleetwood Docks, is a modern commercial site which has been purpose built by Lancashire company Conlon Construction to create a new home for some of the current fish processing businesses in the port.
The project has been made possible by the successful joint bid by Wyre Council and Associated British Ports (ABP) for £4m from the UK Government’s Getting Building Fund.
A truly collaborative approach has delivered the project, facilitated by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, as well as capital investment from Wyre Council to purchase the facility and financial support from Lancashire County Council's Lancashire Economic Recovery and Growth Fund. ABP engaged local architectural practice, Cassidy + Ashton, to lead on the planning and design for the scheme.
In 2020, the Government announced a £900 million Getting Building Fund to deliver jobs, skills and infrastructure across the country. This Fund is being targeted in areas facing the biggest economic challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is supporting the delivery of shovel-ready infrastructure projects, agreed with Lancashire Enterprise Partnership to boost economic growth and fuel local recovery and jobs.
Councillor David Henderson, Leader of Wyre Council, said, “We are incredibly pleased to officially open the new Neptune Food and Fish Processing Park in Fleetwood.
“The creation of a new facility on Fleetwood Docks has been a project high on our agenda for many years and we hope the project will unlock future investment for Fleetwood.”
Debbie Francis OBE, Chair of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP), said, “It’s great that the LEP has been able to support this scheme which will help future proof Fleetwood’s fishing industry and protect local jobs.
“Project Neptune will also help open up wider opportunities on the waterfront, such as new residential developments and new public realm. This means in addition to food production this investment will enable growth in other sectors, which is what the LEP's funding strategy is all about.”
County Councillor Aidy Riggott, Lancashire County Council cabinet member for economic development and growth, said, "Food processing is a crucial employer within Fleetwood and an important contributor to its economic recovery.
"Project Neptune is exactly the type of scheme we've been looking to support through the Lancashire Economic Recovery and Growth Fund – where our financial support can immediately make an impact by securing the future of local jobs, and laying the ground for businesses to grow and develop."
Andrew Harston, ABP Regional Director for Wales and Short Sea Ports, said, “We’re delighted to see the completion of Fleetwood’s food and fish processing park. This project is an excellent example of how local government and businesses can collaborate to benefit local communities.
“As the UK’s leading ports group, ABP has a network of 21 ports around the UK. In the North West, our ports of Fleetwood, Silloth, Barrow and Garston contribute £550 million to the UK economy every year, with the support of our customers.”
Darren Lee, Commercial Director for Conlon Construction, said, “The food processing industry in Fleetwood is a powerhouse for the local economy and this transformation of commercial space at Fleetwood Docks will shore up the industry for years to come. These contemporary, future-proof premises will provide occupants the space to grow and opportunity to thrive.
“Construction innovation has also been at the heart of the project. We have used carefully chosen materials and techniques, ensuring that the completed site is sympathetic in style to the surrounding area, and maintains its commercial viability.”
Alistair Baines, Chairman at Cassidy + Ashton and head architect on the project said, “As a local architectural and town planning practice it has been very rewarding to play a major part in helping design and deliver a project so important to the town of Fleetwood and the local community.
“We are delighted to have been involved in achieving a successful outcome which I believe has been founded on a truly collaborative team effort and a partnership that has worked so well through very challenging times.”