Page last updated at 09:15 GMT, Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Bank pulls out of city shops deal

Artist's impression of the new library. Picture courtesy of DLA Architects.
Wakefield Council envisaged a new library at the development

A construction company working on a prestigious 200m shopping centre has confirmed that a bank backing the project has pulled out of the deal.

On Tuesday morning 185 workers at the Wakefield Trinity Walk shopping development being built by York-based Shepherd Construction stopped work.

In a statement on Wednesday Shepherd said the Anglo Irish Bank had declared it would no longer fund the scheme.

Wakefield MP Mary Creagh said financing had been an ongoing problem.

In a statement Shepherd Construction said the bank had walked away from the project.


The statement said: "We are able to confirm that the Anglo Irish Bank has today declared they will no longer be supporting the funding of the Trinity Walk, Wakefield project.

"Shepherd is proactively working with other partners on a rescue package to secure funding for the completion of the project and is committed to seeing this project succeed.

"No further site operations will take place until funding is in place."

The Trinity Walk project was due to transform the Marshway area of the city centre.

Work started in September 2007 with major high street stores due to take up units in the development.

Mary Creagh, the Wakefield Labour MP, said:" There have been problems financing the project since the Anglo-Irish Bank was nationalised in January this year.

"I have been working closely with Wakefield Council, Yorkshire Forward and and central government to arrive at a funding solution.

"I shall continue to do everything in my power to ensure this flagship city centre development project goes ahead."

Wakefield Council said that, along with the development agency Yorkshire Forward, it had recently identified 7m grant aid for the project.

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