Gilford Mill is sold, 30 years on

What will the plans be for the historic landmark?
What will the plans be for the historic landmark?

The iconic Gilford Mill, which has been the subject of much speculation, has been agreed for sale.

The mill, which was built 175 years ago in 1841, was once the largest industrial undertaking on the Upper Bann before production was ceased in the 1980s.

It is thought that the transaction will be finalised sometime this week.

At the normal month meeting of the Gilford Concerned Residents Group (GCRG), Group Chairman Timothy Mayes confirmed that a number of tenders had been submitted for the Mill by the due date of 6 February - and one of these had been successful, subject to contract.

The GCRG are hoping to meet the new owner soon in order to hear what the future of the mill might look like.

A spokesperson for the GCRG stated, “The Group delegated to Timothy (Mayes) the authority to engage with the relevant financial institutions in order to bring the mill premises to the market.

“This was a difficult process which took a considerable amount of time, given the complexities around various issues relating to the mill.

“Timothy had to engage with a number of stakeholders, as GCRG felt that the critical issue was actually getting the mill on the market to gauge interest.

“We would like to place on record our thanks to Timothy for his hard work and dedication - and our appreciation of the efforts of Liam Hannaway, various local councillors - such as Seamus Doyle and Jonathan Buckley - as well as our two MLAs, Jo-Anne Dobson and Sydney Anderson.

“We look forward to progress and hope that everyone, including the ABC Council, can play their part in keeping Gilford moving forward.”

The mill was originally divided into two separate firms, with one used for thread spinning and the other for manufacturing and bleaching. However, the mill has been awaiting redevelopment for over 30 years.

Gilford residents will be waiting in anticipation to see what plans will be rolled out in the coming months for the well-loved, history-rich building.

Mr Mayes commented, “This matter is really out of the hands of GCRG, and now it is up to others to take the mill - and the village - forward.”