Castleford Riverside

Artist’s impression of the new riverside looking towards the Ship Inn from Queens Mill. Artist’s impression of the new riverside looking towards the Ship Inn from Queens Mill.


The council has received a £23.9m Town Deal from the Government's Towns Fund to support a range of projects in Castleford.

These projects aim to revitalise Castleford as a distinctive riverside market town. This will leverage its rich heritage to attract new businesses and employment opportunities. Additionally, they will provide skills training opportunities and create high-quality environments for residents and visitors to enjoy.

The four projects included in our Town Deal program have had extensive public consultation since 2020. They have received endorsement from our Castleford Town Deal Board.

Opening up the Riverside

Our Riverside project focuses on Castleford's proximity to the River Aire which makes it the district's only riverside market town. New visitors, though, might not know the river was there, as the town centre largely turns its back on this unique natural selling point.

We will aim to make the river more accessible and encourage visitors to spend time enjoying the area by:

  • new/improved green-spaces
    • we will create an expanded green area around the millennium bridge, and a new one will be developed west of Queens Mill
    • this landscaping project will result in high-quality public space for the enjoyment of residents and visitors

  • delivering anchor destinations

    • the historic Ship Inn will be renovated and transformed into a public house or food and drink venue

    • additionally, we will provide support to Queens Mill to preserve Castleford's heritage

    • this will maximise its potential as a venue for events, functions, and unique workspaces

Dealing with the Crimea Tavern

    • the old public house has been empty for a long time and is an eyesore

    • The Council will acquire and demolish the buildings to address problems with anti-social behaviour
    • In the short term, we will green the area, to tie in with the new riverside parks, whilst a long-term solution for the site is determined


A sketch drawing of the full Riverside proposal A sketch drawing of the full Riverside proposal


This project is at the heart of our Castleford plans which focus on access to the river. This will allow residents to enjoy nature, attracting visitors with high-quality destinations, while providing opportunities for innovative businesses to support water activities.


  • business case submission: June 2022
  • receipt of initial funding: September 2022
  • Detailed design: 2024
  • Demolition works begin: early 2025
  • Demolition complete: mid-2025
  • Landscaping complete and public opening: early 2026

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