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Warrington Transporter Bridge (BBC news)

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Yes I know there's been topics on here before about our Grade II* Listed Transporter Bridge, one of only 3 remaining in the world.  It's also which is also a National Monument and is now on English Heritages At RISK Register thanks to the council's complete lack of care, maintenance and interest in it over the years they have been responsible for it......

.....but here's another one

Did anyone see Look North West News last night ?  A group is trying to save it before it's too late and Andy Farrel from WBC was also interviewed and gave a very lame excuse (in my opinion)

 

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I am surprised that a firm like Lever Brothers has not taken more interest in preserving the bridge considering it is a major feather in the history of the company along with the village of Port Sunlight. My Dad worked on the bridge for many years  during his time at Crosfield's.

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Good point and you'd think they'd have been pushing the council to do to something about it too over th years.  Maybe they should demand the lease back off the council seeing as though WBC took it on and the responsibility to preserve it in 1977 and looks what's happened !!  It would be interesting to see just twat clauses are in the lease but I guess they may not be willing to say.

The lease expires in 2027 though so I wonder what will happen then.  Will just be renewed or will WBC will wipe their hands of it too as it's too much trouble.

Mmm just a though but I wonder what Andy Farrel meant when he said, and I quote, "The issue is that we really need to undertake the wider regeneration of the area to bring it [the bridge] out in it's true glory" .  How can they be waiting to regenerate the area and what regeneration could they do anyway with Levers/Crosfields/Unilever/Ineos (are they all the same company now?) still on the land that surrounds the transporter.

All very strange.............

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maybe it's something our extra councillor can get involved with.

None seem to have bothered so far.. infact WHY HAVE NONE BOTHERED.  Shame on you councilors but then again what do we expect when it's anything to do with heritage !!

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It's one of 3 in the UK. There are 5 more around the world.

 

It's in my ward, so let me consult you. So how much of your money do you want your council to spend? Newport's cost £3m in 1995 to re-open, and another £2m to repair in 2011. Middlesbrough's has cost £6m in the last 5 years. And both those serve some purpose. Here we're talking about a redundant works bridge with no modern use whatsoever. A tourist attraction like the Angel of the North? Give over.

 

Best bet would be to do the Auf Wiedersehen Pet thing and move it somewhere else where it could be useful.

 

Seriously, unless there's some heritage funding out there, I'm not sure how renovation could be justified. There's a suggestion that the three UK bridges should be made a world heritage site. That might do it.

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None seem to have bothered so far.. infact WHY HAVE NONE BOTHERED.  Shame on you councilors but then again what do we expect when it's anything to do with heritage !!

 

Wow - nothing like demanding an instant response...

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Wow - nothing like demanding an instant response...

Its been stood rotting for years due to neglect,  hardly demanding instant response is it?

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Wow - nothing like demanding an instant response...

I wasn't demanding an immediate response just giving my view re councilors and heritage over the years and lets face it WBC don't have a very good track record on that score do they ... but hey I did get an immediate response and from you a councilor but not quite the response I was hoping for.  You clearly don't care about it Clr Parish do you ?  Anyway a response is a response so 'gratefully' received and I've marked it with a big star on my calendar.

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 twat clauses are in the lease but I guess they may not be willing to say.

 

Freudian reference to WBC excuses???? :wink:

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I think one of the biggest regrets that Widnes Council had was to scrap the Widnes Transporter bridge, it was always felt by the people of Widnes and Runcorn that it would have been a tremendous tourist attraction. However, for it to succeed it would have needed tourists to pay to cross the Mersey to finance the upkeep. I'm not sure that Warrington's transporter would generate the required income from tourists to justify keeping it, therefore it would just become an expense. I'm not sure many people would support that, if for instance money was taken from Social care. I could be wrong.

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It's one of 3 in the UK. There are 5 more around the world.

 

It's in my ward, so let me consult you. So how much of your money do you want your council to spend? Newport's cost £3m in 1995 to re-open, and another £2m to repair in 2011. Middlesbrough's has cost £6m in the last 5 years. And both those serve some purpose. Here we're talking about a redundant works bridge with no modern use whatsoever. A tourist attraction like the Angel of the North? Give over.

 

Best bet would be to do the Auf Wiedersehen Pet thing and move it somewhere else where it could be useful.

 

Seriously, unless there's some heritage funding out there, I'm not sure how renovation could be justified. There's a suggestion that the three UK bridges should be made a world heritage site. That might do it.

So there we go the answer from a councilor... part of which being it will cost too much.  Fair play to you for answering though.

 

Apologies about my mistake re the transporter being one of 3 worldwide rather than 5.  Well seeing as though there are another 2 in the world we may as well knock ours down then or just leave it to fall down on it's own accord which will be cheaper and save some money !?!  Hey I'd make a good councilor with suggestions like that eh... 

 

Yes I agree that it's in an awkward position and is not very accessible but that still doesn't mean it shouldn't have been be looked after over the years the council have had responsibility for it and should continue to be disgarded like another thing that is simply a burdon or in the way as often happens with pieces of Warrington's heritage. 

 

 

So questions, and as it's in your ward you may be able to answer them

 

1) WHY has it been left for so long with nothing being done to it?  Maybe if it had been looked after a little better it wouldn't cost so much to sort now.

 

2) WHY did the council take a 50 year lease on it in 1977 and who's idea was it ie Crosfields or the councils ?  Seems a strange thing to take a lease on unless theres a very good reason.

 

3) Has anyone every looked at it in an official capacity and have any structural surveys been done either in the past or recently ?

 

3) You mention heritage funding..... has any EVER been applied for or even discussed by the council with an intention to apply? 

 

3)  How much in total are the council spending on doing up Bank Park ?  It's a few million isn't it ?  Is that money well spent, I don't think so, as other than the removal of hedges etc and a new pathway and flowerbeds I don't think our money has been spent very wisely there at all.   In fact it looks all very bland now and uninspiring.

 

4)  How much did the council spend on doing the pavements & road up bottom of Bridge Street and putting the big plant pots in ?  That was a few million too wasn't it although I must admit it does look better but a heck of a lot of money for such a small amount of work.  Why did it cost that much ?

 

5)  What terms or other details are in the lease that the council hold for the Transporter Bridge ?  Can you find out please asap and let us know as nothing will be 'secret' and leases on buildings etc are easily available to view via land registry but obviously this one wont be filed with it not relating to a building (or will it?)

 

6)  You mention the 3 in the UK possibly being given 'world heritage site' status.  Has anything happened about that over the past 4 years since it was suggested ?

 

7)  What plans are in the pipeline for the regeneration of the area that Andy Farel referred to? 

 

I'm sure I'll have loads more questions later after a few more coffees..... brace yourself Clr Parish and maybe you'd best call for backup to fight the councils corner :wink:

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WBC has a disgusting record when it comes to our towns heritage.  They really can't be trusted as guardians of our historic buildings as time after time they let the people down.  That reply is a disgrace really Councillor Parish.

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I think one of the biggest regrets that Widnes Council had was to scrap the Widnes Transporter bridge, it was always felt by the people of Widnes and Runcorn that it would have been a tremendous tourist attraction. However, for it to succeed it would have needed tourists to pay to cross the Mersey to finance the upkeep. I'm not sure that Warrington's transporter would generate the required income from tourists to justify keeping it, therefore it would just become an expense. I'm not sure many people would support that, if for instance money was taken from Social care. I could be wrong.

You see that the problem I have and of course I wouldn't want to see money from social care funds etc and spent on the bridge but they couldn't do that anyway as they are different pots of money.   

 

To lose our Transporter would be awful and like I said earlier I do realise it's not in a good location to be a tourist attraction at the moment but who's to say in say 10 years time that the part of the Mersey it crosses wont be accessible.  Crosfields/Unilever might move or even free up some of their land so it does become accessible and by then it may be too late to save it.   Loads of things could happen but once it's gone it's gone forever so at least maintain it in some way so it doesn't deteriorate even further.  Unless WBC get off their arse and lift a finger they wont get anywhere especially if there is a chance of heritage funding available !

 

I'm feeling quite cross today can you tell ?

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It's one of 3 in the UK. There are 5 more around the world.

 

It's in my ward, so let me consult you. So how much of your money do you want your council to spend? Newport's cost £3m in 1995 to re-open, and another £2m to repair in 2011. Middlesbrough's has cost £6m in the last 5 years. And both those serve some purpose. Here we're talking about a redundant works bridge with no modern use whatsoever. A tourist attraction like the Angel of the North? Give over.

 

Best bet would be to do the Auf Wiedersehen Pet thing and move it somewhere else where it could be useful.

 

Seriously, unless there's some heritage funding out there, I'm not sure how renovation could be justified. There's a suggestion that the three UK bridges should be made a world heritage site. That might do it.

 

If that is your attitude to items of historic interest to the towns industrial past then I just hope your electorate dump you into the political wasteland where you belong at the next election....

 

Your attitude is typical of the reason why we have so few buildings of historic interest left in the town any more

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Baz, the philistines at the Town Hall have no interest or clue about what we value as heritage, they  brought us the "Shittles" at market gate at a stupid cost both for the commissioning and the ongoing maintenance.

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I'm sure if Warrington was in the "Liverpool City Region" the bridge would have been renovated as a link to the Liverpool waterfront project.

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I'm sure that if the bridge was in almost any other town it would have more chance of being treated better by its keepers than has been the case here in Warrington.

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You just need look at the callous disregard held by  the Councillor whose ward the bridge is in to see the reason this town is bereft of most of its historic architecture.  

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I believe the bridge is protected as 'Scheduled Ancient Monument' which means it would be a criminal offence to

 

  • Destroy or damage it, or
  • Do any "works" which would demolish, damage, remove, repair, add or alter it

So I guess all you can do is leave it until it rusts and collapses.

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I believe the bridge is protected as 'Scheduled Ancient Monument' which means it would be a criminal offence to

 

  • Destroy or damage it, or
  • Do any "works" which would demolish, damage, remove, repair, add or alter it

So I guess all you can do is leave it until it rusts and collapses.

I think the other two transporter bridges in  Britain have similar protection but this hasn't stopped their repair and upkeep being performed

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Ah yes of course and maybe that is what he was referring to although area 14 is marked as commercial and isn't that what it already is or do they mean NEW commercial next to the new proposed housing.  I'll have a look on my overlay map as it makes more sense to me then.

 

I'd still be interested to know if there are any other redevelopment plan ideas lurking in the pipelines though as it still seems odd to me that Lidl & KFC plans are recommended for refusal on a piece of land that has been derelict and an eyesore for years and with rather lame reasons for refusal too.  Other plans for there seem to have been refused too in the past as have ones for nearby premises and land and ALL are in a nice line from Arpley to the Pink Eye Sankey roundabout.  Damn shame the planning blokes destroyed all the old planning records as there's no way of finding out more about those now and that's the second time this week I've needed to refer to an older application but can't (totally unrelated by the way).

 

I've been given another map by the way which showed the proposed bridge routes too from way back and although it may have only been an IDEA it's almost identical but with an additional spur road off to Sankey Green island too.  Like I say that may have just been an 'option' when they all had their heads round the table.

 

Anyway back to the Transporter Bridge........ where was I ?

 

 

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