Update given on Hilden Mill plan

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Clanmil Housing Association have reaffirmed their commitment to redeveloping the 24 acre site at the former Hilden Mill.

At a recent meeting of Lisburn City Council’s Planning Committee, representatives from the Association gave councillors an update on the current position of the scheme, revealing that there was currently an £8-£10 million deficit in funding for the redevelopment, which includes housing, community, retail and office space.

Clanmil Chief Executive Claire McCarty told the committee: “We are very enthusiastic about the oportuniity but we are not over the line yet.”

The Association’s Director of Property Services, Carol McTaggart, explained that a year-long extension had been obtained from NAMA to allow Clanmil to seek additional funding for the development.

“Hopefully we can bring this regeneration proposal to life,” she said.

Project Manager Mike Smith said they had been “talking at length” with the Department of Social Development who are working with Clanmil to “manage the shortfall”.

He added that it was hoped that if the funding could be found, a detailed planning application would be submitted before the end of the year and the sale finalised with NAMA.

At the meeting, Lisburn Councillors voiced their strong support for the redevelopment scheme. Councillor Brian Dornan said: “We have been very excited about the potential of this site and there is great anxiety that time is marching on.”

Councillor Stephen Martin added: “The vision Clanmil has for the site is outstanding.”