The iconic Sunbeam factory has been purchased by a developer and will be brought back to life as homes as part of a £10 million transformation, the Express & Star can exclusively reveal.
The building at the gateway to Wolverhampton city centre has been empty since 1999 and is now a boarded-up eyesore.
But property developer and former rugby player Liam Wordley has revealed he has bought the factory, called Sunbeamland in its heyday, from regeneration company Urban Splash.
The 34-year-old is now in talks with Wolverhampton City Council and is preparing to submit a planning application for ‘a range of residential uses’.
Mr Wordley was also behind the regeneration of the former Territorial Army drill hall in Stafford Street, next door to the Hogshead bar, which is now student accommodation.
Sunbeam was once famous for its motorcycles, but the 120,000sq ft site off the Penn Road island has been empty for 14 years.
Father-of-two Mr Wordley said he was planning to invest around £10m into the redevelopment of the site.
He added: “I’ve bought it and now I’m working with the council to make sure they are going to be happy with what happens.”
Councillor Malcolm Gwinnett, former mayor of Wolverhampton, said he had wanted to see the site redeveloped for years. He said: “I’m extremely pleased that one of the iconic buildings in the city is coming forward for regeneration.
"There have been talks going on between the developer and the council. It’s a big site and it’s one of the main parts of the area that is being regenerated, not far from Raglan Street, where Sainsbury’s will build their new store.”