Shopping village's £1.5m plans to expand into the Ribble Valley

Oswaldtwistle Mills has submitted an application to create a new home and lifestyle store selling furniture and contemporary home wares on the Barrow Brook Business Park.

An artist's impression of the proposed new development - Love Furniture Stores.
An artist's impression of the proposed new development - Love Furniture Stores.

The application for the £1.5 million development, which includes a 1,380 sq.m unit, with 620 sq.m at mezzanine level, has been submitted to Ribble Valley Borough Council.

The purpose-built glass fronted store will be occupied by Oswaldtwistle Mills under the new trading name "Love Furniture Stores" and will include a coffee shop/tea room along with 45 car parking spaces. The new development will join Starbucks, Subway, McDonald’s, KFC, Co-Operative Food Store and Texaco petrol station already trading from the business park.

The proposal was conceived following Oswaldtwistle Mills’ successful opening of a similar store within The Mill Outlet and Garden Centre, Batley, in 2016.

Similar to its existing operations, the new retail unit at Barrow Brook, if it is granted planning permission, will accommodate a diverse range of furniture and home wares, with a focus on British made and local suppliers from the Lancashire region, and a white-glove local delivery service.

A spokesman said: "Love Furniture Stores will complement the existing retail offer within Clitheroe town centre and Whalley village, while boosting consumer choice and reducing the need for residents to travel to out-of-town shopping destinations.

"A number of employment opportunities will be created both through the construction period and once open, at a range of levels and seniority."

The application is a joint initiative between Red Rose Holdings, of Darwen, who will be developing and overseeing the build project, and Boyd Hargreaves, managing director of Oswaldtwistle Mills, who will manage the ongoing retail operation.

“Having worked in close partnership within the last year with the local council, we are delighted for the opportunity to be able to bring our expert retailing and marketing experience to a new venture in the Ribble Valley," the spokesman added. "We have worked hard to develop a concept that will not only complement the beautiful aesthetics of the surrounding landscape but also offer a new retail experience and create jobs for local residents.”

The applicants have worked closely with Clitheroe-based architects Stanton Andrews, local planning consultant Andrew Walker and White Young Green, of Manchester. Subject to planning approval, the new store would be up and running for the early part of 2019.