Vision for Princes Gate
Reporter: Dawn Marsden
Date published: 04 June 2015
OLD and new: plans preserve the best of the old
Oldham’s iconic Old Bank could be transformed as part of the “game-changing” Prince’s Gate development at Mumps.
The elaborate exterior of the Grade II listed building, formerly a branch of NatWest bank, will remain to incorporate a gym, restaurants, retail and office space. A modern extension at its side will be home to 54 one and two-bedroom apartments.
The Prince’s Gate development is expected to create more than 700 jobs and generate up to £19 million for the local economy each year. Council leader Jim McMahon said: “Prince’s Gate is all about our aspirations for the future — it is a game-changer for the new Oldham.”
Construction will begin next year. The scheme’s focal point, a 51,000 sq ft Marks and Spencer store is due to open in 2018, and there could be up to four other retailers on what is currently the Metrolink car park, whose spaces will be transferred across the road behind the existing coffee shop. Proposals include six shops in front of the car park, as well as either an hotel or 36 apartments.
There are also plans to demolish Roscoe Mill and the RSPCA centre at Rhodes Bank to make way for a supermarket, 55 apartments and a 250-bay car park. Extensive landscaping will include lighting, plant beds and seating areas.
Councillor McMahon added: “Getting the right facilities in town is important to local people, because Oldhamers tell us this all the time. Our eastern gateway is opening up as a major new opportunity and it’s vital we grasp this chance to make the most of our new Metrolink connection, attract new high street names, offer quality town centre living options and preserve the historic Grade II-listed NatWest bank building for modern use.
“Prince’s Gate will also complement our blossoming new Independent Quarter which will benefit as the natural link between this new development and the old town hall Odeon cinema, Parliament Square and the Spindles/Town Square shopping centre.
“I hope people can now see, as with the action we’re taking to provide a town centre cinema and better sporting and heritage facilities, that we’re definitely ‘on with the job’.”