New jobs hope for Metrolite site

Metrolite Industries, Warrington Road, Lower Ince
Metrolite Industries, Warrington Road, Lower Ince

NEW jobs could soon be created after investors bought a former disabled workshop in Wigan.

The old Metrolite premises in Warrington Road, Ince, which are owned by Wigan Council, were sold for £350,000 – £100,000 more than the guide price at an auction by Pugh and Co in Manchester last week.

But as the deal is still fresh, a council spokesman was unable to divulge who the owner was, but stated that it planned to relocate its existing business to the Ince site and expand production.

The workshop, which employed disabled people to manufacture PVCu doors and windows, fencing and garden furniture, closed in September 2011, forcing around 20 employees out of work.

The council said it could no longer afford to subsidise the business and the closure saved the authority up to £250,000 per year, which was diverted into vital front-line services.

Martin Wright, head of assets at Wigan Council, said: “A number of local companies had shown interest in the property and attended the auction to bid.

“A local manufacturing company was successful. At this stage of the sale process it is inappropriate to reveal the identity of the buyer.

“We understand they wish to use the facility to relocate and expand production.

“The money from the sale will be included in the council’s Capital Receipts Programme and used to fund various capital works.”

Meanwhile, several other landmark buildings in Wigan went under the hammer at the auction in Manchester.

Former Chinese take-away Beijing House, in Liverpool Road, Hindley, was bought for £130,000.

The Miner’s Arms pub, in City Road, Kitt Green, was snapped up for £70,000; bidders won Cherrycroft House (a two-storey detached commercial/residential property, off Wigan Lane) for £50,000; a retail investment producing an annual equivalent income of £7,500 plus two vacant residential flats in Gerard Street, Ashton, was sold at £85,000; land in Ormskirk Road, Pemberton, was purchased at £50,000; and the former cinema in Market Street, Atherton, was secured at the starting price of £60,000.

The Britannia pub, in St Helens Road, Leigh, was bought ahead of the auction for an undisclosed sum.

Shevington Junior and Infants School, in Miles Lane, which was first put under the hammer two years ago, was withdrawn.