Publics chance to hear more about ambitious mill restoration plans

Pembrokeshire businesses and residents are being invited to find out more about ambitious plans to restore an iconic Grade 2* listed mill to its Victorian heyday at a series of public roadshows held by Bluestone National Park Resort.

Four roadshow events are being hosted to show members of the public visual concepts of the proposed scheme to transform Blackpool Mill near Narberth into a Victorian-themed attraction, complete with a narrow-gauge steam railway.

Local people will also be able to chat with the Bluestone team behind the project - Pembrokeshire Coast National Park- whilst traders and suppliers can learn more about events at the site.

The roadshows, which are part of ongoing public consultation, will take place between 10 am and 2 pm at the following venues:

Wednesday 25th January: Picton Centre, Haverfordwest

Thursday 26th January: Torch Theatre, Milford Haven

Friday 27th January: Town Hall, Pembroke

Saturday 28th January: Queens Hall, Narberth

If the restoration of the 19th-century five-story flour mill goes ahead, it will bring 60 jobs to the area and inject £1.6m into the local economy every year. The plans include a Victorian tearoom, a milling experience, history and discovery level, a creative crafts workshop, and a Victorian-themed 'Escape the Room' attraction.

Two ancillary buildings, including the miller's cottage, will also be brought back to life, and community and cultural events will be held in the riverside meadow.

An exhibition and events barn will be used throughout the year, whilst key to making the mill a year-round attraction will be the narrow-gauge steam railway, with its own station and platform.

Bluestone CEO, William McNamara OBE, said: "The roadshows represent an exciting stage for the project and we're looking forward to engaging with members of the local community and hearing their views.

"We hope residents and traders will share our vision to bring this historic landmark building back to its former glory. We would love to hear of any memories of the mill when it was operational, particularly stories about its workers and daily life that may have been passed down through the generations."

Currently lying disused and in a state of disrepair, the mill was in use until the Second World War and a full set of machinery still survives.

The plans are sympathetic to the site's heritage and ecology, with the building expected to open to the public in the autumn if the £2.5m project is approved.

The development will significantly extend Bluestone's current visitor offering and will add to the £18m the resort has added to the local economy in the last three years alone.



Notes to editors:

Award-winning Bluestone is an environmentally sensitive development based within the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, offering Free Range activities and lodges, cottages, and studios to outdoorsy families. Bluestone employs 700 people and achieved in 2016 Gold Standard Investors in People award.

For more information please contact Anna Hartt at; or 029 2078 6042.