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Butler family returns to Kirkstall Forge

A Leeds man is set to continue his family’s 200-year links with the historic Kirkstall Forge site.

Schofield Insurance Brokers are moving into office block Kirkstall Forge, which is the first part of a multi-million pound development of the site, which dates back to the ninth century.

For Schofield Insurance Brokers director Tom Butler, the move has added significance.

number 1 Kirkstall forge
Number One Kirkstall Forge

Mr Butler’s family was involved for six generations with the management of Kirkstall Forge from 1779, buying it from the Cardigan Estate in 1893.

It went from strength to strength and remained in the Butler family until 1974.  Mr Butler said:

“This agreement is an important one for Schofield Insurance Brokers as we embark on the next phase of our growth journey.

“Personally, it’s a proud moment to be involved in a successful business at Kirkstall Forge and to follow in the footsteps of the Butler family, which has always held this nationally important site close to its heart.”

The cafe and restaurant at Number One Kirkstall Forge has been named ‘Butlers’ and meeting rooms have been named after members of the Butler family.

Paul Richardson, investment manager at CEG, said: 

“We have always been proud of the long history of Kirkstall Forge and to welcome the Butlers back here is brilliant for us all on a very personal level.

“Ultimately, the £400 million Kirkstall Forge scheme is set to become home to a thriving mixed-use community comprising of 1,050 new homes, 300,000 sq ft of offices and 100,000 sq ft of retail, leisure and community space and we are excited about the delivery of further phases of the development over the coming months.”

CEG has let almost 3,000 sq ft of office space to Schofield Insurance Brokers.

The letting to the independent insurance broker means Number One, Kirkstall Forge is now fully occupied.

It follows CEG’s submission of a planning application for the development of the next 200,000 sq ft of commercial space at the £400m Kirkstall Forge development in Leeds last month.

Schofield Insurance Brokers has taken the space on a flex lease and will complete its move in April 2020.


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