Striding ahead at Huddersfield’s Waterfront

A canal towpath, abandoned over 30 years ago, has been reinstated as part of a major re-development scheme in Huddersfield.

The new towpath runs for 350 metres alongside the Huddersfield Narrow Canal and connects with recently refurbished sections of towpath and link path.

A new footpath next to the River Colne has also been completed. As a result, pedestrians can now walk an attractive waterside route between Chapel Hill and Manchester Road at Longroyd Bridge.

The paths have been built for Kirklees Council using tarmac reclaimed from the site, and trees, bulbs, grass, and wildflowers have been planted. The works complement a newly-revealed section of the canal which had been in-filled in the 1970’s and then restored in 2001 in a tunnel when Sellers Engineers Ltd occupied the area.

The council’s landscape architects have undertaken the design in consultation with British Waterways. The paths have been built by main contractor Clugston Construction Ltd of Leeds, and the planting has been carried out by Grace Landscapes Ltd of Mirfield.

Highway improvements in Chapel Hill, including better street lighting, footways, and pedestrian crossings, and carried out by the council’s Streetcare Service, will be finished next winter.

The works form part of The Waterfront, a joint scheme between Kirklees Council and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. Jacqui Gedman, Acting Director of Place at the council, said: “Waterside locations attract the development of land and buildings, so the improvements are an investment in Huddersfield’s future. The Waterfront promises to be the most exciting multi-purpose development scheme in the town for many years”.

The commercial land has outline planning permission for four buildings offering prime office space, some retailing, and a crèche, and the council has appointed agents GVA to market the opportunity to developers, investors, and occupiers. The Waterfront also includes a new campus for Kirklees College, under construction, and plans for residential accommodation.