Major project aims to kick-start wider Kirkdale regeneration

Major project aims to kick-start wider Kirkdale regeneration

8 May 2019

Liverpool Foundation Homes (Foundations) and Britain’s former super-middleweight boxing champion, Paul Smith, have announced plans for a major regeneration project that aims to kickstart the transformation of part of Kirkdale, north Liverpool.

If approved, the scheme would provide affordable new homes, community facilities, elderly care accommodation, an eco-park and a new boxing academy to be run by Smith and his three brothers, collectively holders of British, European and world titles. 

London-based Lacey Capital Partners is a partner in the project.  The Liverpool studio of architects Falconer Chester Hall are acting as master-planners.

The proposed scheme would be sited in a derelict railway cutting and neighbouring canalside that runs along Melrose Road and Commercial Road through the heart of Kirkdale, which sits two miles north of Liverpool city centre.

The partners’ ambition is to deliver a scheme which will deliver radical improvements for the wider regeneration of the area, notably the residential ‘flower streets’ and Orwell Road area.

“If we get this right then it’ll represent neighbourhood regeneration of the very best kind,” says Mark Kitts, chief executive of Foundations.

“This could be a big scheme which will need a phased approach, the early phases could deliver a step-change in community and commercial infrastructure and improve perceptions of the area.  We want to work with landlords, owner occupiers and other investors to deliver long-term change and physical improvement.  We’ve seen what can be achieved by a housing-led approach in Anfield and Easby  and Kirkdale Canalside builds on these experiences,” added Mr Kitts.

Outline proposals for the project are being put to the local community via two days of public consultation later this month.  Almost 3,000 homes and businesses are being leafleted to encourage them to attend.

Commenting on the proposals, Paul Smith said: “We’re at an early stage but wanted to share our initial thinking with the people of Kirkdale so that they can help shape our ideas.

“The area has been crying out for new community facilities and these will go beyond boxing in to areas such as fitness, diet, nutrition and wider life skills,” he added.

Chris Lacey, the managing director of Lacey Capital Partners said: “The real housing need across the city is for high quality yet affordable living. The aim here is to create a great and healthy place to live where the spacious green environment and very good transport links will serve the community and Liverpool really well. This is an innovative and exciting opportunity serving a genuine need.”  

“This project is an opportunity for Paul Smith to give back to the people of Kirkdale and represents his love and passion for our community,” explained Cllr Joe Hanson (Lab), ward councillor for Kirkdale.

“This period of consultation also brings the opportunity for the residents of Kirkdale to shape what they feel our community needs. I am determined to ensure that this consultation reflects the needs and wishes of the residents of Kirkdale and that they decide the future of their community as we move forward.

“This is an exciting opportunity for my constituents and I would urge everyone living in our community to engage in the consultation process to ensure your voice is heard,” added Cllr Hanson.

Two public consultation events will be held at the Gordon Institute on Stanley Road and residents can pop along to either:

  • Friday 17th May, 10am-2pm and 4pm – 6.30pm
  • Saturday 18th May, 10am-4pm

People unable to attend the consultation can view the proposals here and take part in a survey about the plans. Click here to view the survey. 

Editor’s notes:

About Liverpool Foundation Homes

Liverpool Foundation Homes (Foundations) is Liverpool City Council’s ethical housing company. Foundations is the flagship housing policy for Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson, who wants to use the company to rebalance the city’s social housing stock, revolutionise the Rent to Buy sector and drive up council tax receipts.

It has been tasked with creating bespoke properties for the homeless, foster carers, large families, the elderly and people with a disability and to improve the availability of good quality, affordable homes in the city.

For more information visit:

About Lacey Capital Partners

Lacey Capital Partners provides investment and development advice in the UK residential sector and was founded in 2017 by Chris Lacey who has advised on more than £5bn of successful projects to date. 

Further information at

About Paul Smith

Paul Smith is a professional boxer from Kirkdale, Liverpool, and the former British super-middleweight champion, a title he won 30th October 2009 and held until 11th December 2012, having successfully defended the title previously.

Smith’s career spans 45 fights, including 38 wins, of which 22 were by KO.  He now works with Sky Sports as an expert commentator and summariser as well as retaining various business interests.  He is the eldest of four boxing brothers who between them have won British, European and world titles.