Holme mills is located adjacent to the Huddersfield Narrow Canal near Marsden in West Yorkshire. Constructed in 1908 the mill was used for a range of textile operations including carding before parts of the building fell into disrepair.
According to Paul Meikle-Janney, one of the three founders of Dark Woods, a high-end coffee roasting and supply company, the business required a rural mill location providing an ‘evocative’ work place offering flexible and cheap space which could be re-modelled to fits Dark Woods’ specific needs. A unit in Holme Mills became available in 2013 although work had to be undertaken to concrete the floors, fill an underfloor pit, sand blast the walls back to the original brick work and repair leaking windows, prior to occupation.
Dark Woods moved into the building in 2014 and has undertaken a series of incremental improvements to create a modern interior design incorporating roasting, warehousing and distribution facilities, a pop-up café and meeting/training spaces. As other units have become available the business has expanded to now occupy 7,500 square feet and founders, Paul Meikle-Janney, Damian Blackburn and Ian Agnew now employee 15 members of staff.
Dark Woods is a major supplier across the north of England and includes Fortnam and Mason as one of its customers. The investment made by Dark Woods in the building has helped to attract complementary businesses with similar values, such as Zapata Brewery, now located in an adjoining unit at the mill.
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