News & PressThe City Surveys Group - The UK's Measurement Specialists
Additions to Historic England ‘at risk’
Published: 31st October 2017
This Article was Written by: Richard Furlong - City Surveys Group
Historic England’s At Risk List is a register of endangered historic properties released annually in October.
This year, thirty sites have been removed from the list with their futures secured; sadly, another twenty-five new properties have been added replacing them.
Sites removed from the register include St Luke’s, the 185 year old ‘bombed out’ church in the heart of Liverpool. This iconic town centre landmark will become an arts and events hub supporting vulnerable people.
Prehistoric Birkrigg Stone Circle in Cumbria and Ashnott Lead Mine and Kiln in Lancashire have also been removed from the list thanks to the hard work of dedicated volunteers and local councils with a passion for heritage conservation.
In England, 89 Grade I and Grade II-listed buildings, 114 scheduled monuments, 134 holy building, 65 conservation areas and seven registered parks and gardens are officially ‘at risk’ of neglect, decay or inappropriate alteration.
Heritage At Risk Principal for Historic England in the North West, Charles Smith, said:
“Heritage promotes a sense of belonging and civic pride – and it can also be a huge driver for economic growth, stimulating regeneration and tourism. This year we have seen some wonderful places saved as result of fruitful partnership working with councils.”
Smith warned that a perpetual decline of local authority conservation officers could lead to designated historic parts of the UK coming under threat too.
840 assets are on the At Risk Register nationally. This equates to 3.8%, of all Grade I and II-listed buildings in the country. There are 409 ‘at risk’ assets within the North West – 14 fewer than last year.
Some of the sites added this year include:
Fleetwood Town Centre Conservation Area, Lancashire
In the 1830s, a landowner hatched a scheme to re-develop the coastal town of Fleetwood into a seaport. Historic England and Wyre Council are collaborating to preserve the buildings and attract private investment.
Burton-in-Kendal Conservation Area, Cumbria
Burton-in-Kendal is one of the most historic villages in South Lakeland. Several buildings are empty with some showing signs of decay and loss of historic authenticity. Historic England and South Lakeland District are addressing this to revitalise the village’s economic fortunes.
St Joseph’s Catholic Church, Lancaster, Lancashire
Built in 1900, this beautiful, gothic church was designed by London architects Pugin & Pugin (who created the altarpiece of the Sacred Heart Church in Liverpool). A striking building overlooking the River Lune, it was constructed entirely in sandstone and slate. After years of neglect, the church is no longer watertight and in need of critical repairs.
Sites progressed on the register:
Appleby Conservation Area, Cumbria
Following damaging winter floods in 2015, restoration of the area to develop it as a tourist destination is ongoing. Building repairs are being carried out and a five-year programme in partnership with Eden District Council is being delivered to restore Appleby to its former glory.
Hooton Hangars, Cheshire
Three Grade II-listed World War Two aircraft hangars are being restored in Cheshire. Built in 1917, the site was saved from demolition in 2000 when it came under the ownership of the Hooton Park Trust. Work is now underway to recognise and share its long history.
Blackpool Winter Gardens, Lancashire
This legendary, Grade II-listed venue has been on the register for some time. A £500,000 grant has been secured to repair the roof of the stunning Spanish Hall, with work due to be completed next year.
Wythenshawe Hall, Manchester
Ravaged by fire in 2016, Wythenshawe Hall is a recent addition to the list. This this once-beautiful medieval timber-framed manor house has been destroyed almost beyond repair, with many of its historic features ruined. Historic England continues to work with Manchester City Council to preserve what remains.