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New plans for former Kangol factory

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Copeland Council has given the green light to plans that will allow the transformation of a former Copeland factory.

The Kangol factory in Cleator had produced hats since 1938, and became a worldwide brand. However, the riverside factory closed in 2009 with the loss of 32 jobs. Now North Associates have been granted outline planning permission to make some of the site into office accommodation.

Another part of the same site already has planning permission for 79 houses, and other parts, including the Cleator Mills building, have outline permission to become offices.

The suggested layout in the outline application is for three detached office buildings, though some of the details may change before a full application is submitted.

The initial plans also have 265 parking spaces accessed from the entrance adjacent to the Brook pub. These will be between the building and the River Ehen.

 he development’s closeness to the River means the developer will have to submit a detailed flood risk assessment.

Cllr Geoff Garrity, Copeland’s portfolio holder for community planning, said: “It will be good to see this site, which was once a hive of activity, in use again. The buildings had started to become dilapidated so I will be keen to see a sympathetic development take place there once more.”

A spokesperson for North Associates said: “This is a further step forward for Cleator and the surrounding area. This building has been commonly recognised as an eyesore. The regeneration of this site will help Cleator take advantage of the expanding opportunities associated with the nuclear industry in West Cumbria. In addition, it will create employment and help sustain services in the local area.”