Former biscuit factory near UCLan comes crumbling down for student flats

Posted on - 14th October, 2020 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Housing, Preston News, Redevelopment, UCLan, University campus
Demolition at former Thomas Powell and Son Ltd biscuit factory Pic: Blog Preston
Demolition underway at the former biscuit factory Pic: Blog Preston

Demolition work to bring down a former Victorian biscuit factory near UCLan has begun.


The former Thomas Powell and Son Ltd. factory is making way for student accommodation.

The multi-million-pound scheme, dubbed The Printworks, comprises apartments that are modular studio rooms each with kitchenette and en-suite. They are the first of their kind in to be built in Preston.

The site will see the erection of two four-storey buildings with a central courtyard, common room and a gym.

An aerial view of how the new student flats will look
An aerial view of how the new student flats will look

The front of the new building in Moor Lane is to become a commercial unit, use of which has not yet been determined.

Read more: Craggs Mill set to be transformed into a multi-level community hub

Powell’s factory dates back to 1892 and covered a substantial area surrounded by Moor Lane, Ashmoor Street, Sizer Street and Victoria Street.

The factory closed in the 1950s but the buildings have since been put to use by many other business ventures and community groups including as offices, printers, dance studios and a church.

Members of Facebook group Preston – Who Remembers… have told of their fond memories and expressed their sadness about the building’s demise.

The Prince Arthur Hotel and Thomas Powell & Son Ltd., Moor Lane, Preston Pic: Preston Digital Archive

Many said the factory was housed in “beautiful buildings”, while others recalled family members working there and bringing home broken biscuits.

Jane Forshaw said: “My mum and aunt both worked there, and we always had plenty of biscuits.”

Pat Betteridge echoed her sentiments: “My mum worked there for years. Couldn’t wait for her to come home with broken biscuits.”

Plans for the scheme were submitted in 2016 and permission granted in 2017.

Read more: Latest Preston planning applications for September 25 to October 2

Marc Henshaw of DAY Architectural Ltd, the architects behind the scheme, said the surrounding area and history have been considered in the design process.

He said: “We set about understanding the site, history and context of the site to inform and influence the early conceptual ideas striving to deliver a high quality piece of architecture whilst ensuring the client achieved their key brief factors.”

View of the demolition from Sizer Street Pic: Blog Preston
View of the demolition from Sizer Street Pic: Blog Preston

The former public house then takeaway turned student flats located on the corner of Moor Lane and Victoria Street will remain the same.

Read more: Former Moor Lane pub the University Tavern converted into student housing

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What do you think of the factory being demolished? Let us know in the comments.

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