Stoke & Staffordshire

Pochin collapse: Stoke-on-Trent development to resume

Smithfield development in Stoke-on-Trent
Image caption Work stopped suddenly at the Smithfield site when construction firm Pochin collapsed

Work is set to resume on a major city centre development following the collapse of a construction firm.

Willmott Dixon has been appointed to replace Pochin, which was commissioned to develop the Clayworks apartments and Hilton Garden Inn developments in Stoke-on-Trent.

Work ground to a halt when Pochin went into administration earlier this month, threatening 120 jobs.

The development of the Smithfield site is due to restart within eight weeks.

Image caption An artist's impression of the Hilton Garden Inn development

"We're likely to see continuation of the buildings very very quickly," Abi Brown, leader of Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said.

"The buildings are pretty much structurally finished, it is just the interiors going in now," she said, adding that it was a "surprise" to see work stop when the buildings were so close to completion.

"I want to see them open as soon as possible."

The local authority loaned £6.9m to Genr8 - the development company behind both projects - to get the work under way in 2018, but said the delay was not expected to cost taxpayers any more.

The Holiday Inn is projected to cost £20m and the Clayworks £17m.

"It's not something we would have wished for," said Mike Smith from Genr8. "It's a big challenge."

Workers were turned away and refused access to the site when it unexpectedly closed following Pochin's liquidation.

Simon Butcher, from Willmott Dixon, said the firm hoped to "re-engage the existing workforce".

Follow BBC West Midlands on Facebook, on Twitter, and sign up for local news updates direct to your phone.

Related Topics

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites