A photograph of the Anchor Mill

Projects

Anchor Mill: Derelict Cotton Mill Becomes Apartments and Business Space

An £11 million refurbishment has transformed Anchor Mill into a lucrative live-and-work space.

Perched atop the babbling brooks of White Cart River in Paisley stands Anchor Mill, a domestic finishing mill designed by architects Woodhouse & Morley in 1886. The Grade A-listed building, with its elegant arched windows and flame-red brick exterior, once played a pivotal role in the global cotton economy, but owing to rapid industrial decline closed in 1980.

When the local authority contacted The Prince’s Foundation in 1999, Anchor Mill was virtually derelict, having suffered years of neglect, theft and vandalism. It stood as a stark reminder of the wider economic downturn. The Foundation pledged to regenerate the vast building by finding a contemporary use for it. Owing to the magnitude of the task ahead, a core group consisting of the owner, Renfrewshire Council, Scottish Enterprise Renfrewshire and Historic Scotland was established to drive the project forward.

After securing funding from Historic Scotland and the Scottish Enterprise Renfrewshire, vital construction work to transform the mill into 60 luxury apartments and an innovative business space began in June of 2003. The £11 million refurbishment respected the original structure and style of the space, restoring the stonework, leadwork, windows, wrought iron frame, concrete floors and colonial-inspired central atrium.

The newly restored Anchor Mill was opened by HRH The Prince of Wales in June 2005, much to the delight of the local community. Today, it remains an exquisite reminder of Paisley’s proud industrial past and forward-thinking future.

When the Prince's Foundation was involved in this project it was known as The Prince's Regeneration Trust