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News Report Page 13 of 15
Publication Date:-
News reports located on this page = 2.

Historic Mile Markers in Sefton

FOLLOWING on from our report within last week's edition:- 'Mile Marker - Formby' which was looking at concerns voiced by residents in Formby about the Marker located at the side of the Liverpool Road (B5424) we have had more information sent to us. Being in that age of the SatNav and at the speed we now travel, often these Mile Markers go unnoticed and often get overlooked and forgotten. It is pleasing to hear from readers who have a very strong interest in local History and preserving the past for future generations. Often it is the small, but very important parts of history that get lost the quickest. John Armstrong, who is the representative for the Milestone Society (historic) county of Lancashire area. He has told us that:- "The society has a record of 3 Milestones in the Formby area, and another 1 a little further afield in the Sefton district, on the outskirts of Southport." This confirms what we have been told by our readers, and we have been sent the locations of them. Sadly, we are still waiting for a reply from Sefton about this issue, and this slow reply has highlighted other problems that we are now looking into. But in this case the Milestone Society has given us some amazing information that we hope will be of interest to our readers who flagged up the Milestones issue to us originality.

John Armstrong has gone on to add that:- "The 3 stone Milestones in the Formby area would have been erected in the late 1890ís to early 1900's, following the Local Government reorganisations that introduced the original County Council, Urban and District Council structure. They are of a common Lancashire County Council design with many other examples remaining in Lancashire. But the Southport milestone is a very interesting cast iron design erected in 1892, as stated on its inscription. There are only a few cast iron Milestones remaining in Lancashire and this elaborate design is the only known 1 of its type. As road side assets, Milestones are strictly the responsibility of the relevant Local Highway Authority, in this case Sefton Council. However, with the Local Government budget reductions, protection of historic assets such as Milestones tends to fall under the responsibility of Council Conservation Units rather than operational Highways Departments. Fortunately, Sefton Council still has a Conservation Team and I would suggest that this would be the appropriate unit with whom to raise awareness of the Milestones and their protection status. There are 2 main measures for milestone protection:- The non statutory Local Authority Historic Environment Record (HER) and the Statutory Historic Englandís National Heritage List for England (NHLE) of Protected Buildings and Sites. HERís are used by Local Authorities when considering planning applications and major works such as road developments and repairs to ensure that historic elements are protected. The relevant HER for the Milestones is the Merseyside HER. The HER can be viewed online via Historic Englandís Heritage Gateway website."

John Armstrong then continues to tell us that:- "Currently the 3 Milestones within the Formby area are included in the HER, but worryingly not the Southport Milestone! It would certainly be worth raising inclusion of the Southport Milestone with the Sefton Conservation Team. The Historic England NHLE offers stronger protection measures as it is a statutory list with full planning controls. Currently about 30% of the 9,600 remaining Milestones in England recorded by the society are registered as Grade II listed buildings. None of the 4 Milestones within the Sefton are currently registered in the NHLE. Applications for inclusion can be made by any individual online. The society encourages local communities to apply for listing status where there are concerns about milestone protection, and I am certainly available in this case to help with any applications. Again, it would also be worth consulting with the Sefton Conservation Team on their views."

Mr Armstrong then says:- "The society is concerned with all aspects of milestone conservation and I would also mention that much of our work is concerned with milestone protection against progressive deterioration through the effects of atmospheric and traffic pollution. Milestones were traditionally protected by regular painting, which also provided greater visibility to passing travellers. However, understandably with all the pressure on council budgets, most local authorities, particularly in the north of England, do not have any budget or resources to carry out such preventative maintenance. While we do try to liaise regularly with the local highway authorities and conservation units on the need for such milestone conservation, we find that a more successful approach is to work with more local units such as parish councils or community groups who have an stronger identity with their local Milestones. I have been involved in many such successful projects in the last few years in Lancashire working with a society colleague who has been repainting Milestones for many years. Attached is an example of a milestone repainting on the Preston to Blackpool road he carried out recently. Unfortunately, with advancing years, he is no longer available to paint Milestones himself. However, he is still available to provide advice and guidance. There are also comprehensive guidance notes available on the societyís main website."

John Armstrong concluded with:- "Looking at the photographs of the Milestones the attached document which I took in 2013, there is evidence of some white paint on 2 of the Formby are stone Milestones but none on the 3rd 1, which has some significant surface erosion. I am also particularly concerned that the inscriptions are being worn away and in time will become unreadable. The cast iron milestone in Southport has been repainted quite recently, but there is already strong evidence of rust appearing and I suspect that the situation will have worsened considerably in the 6 years since the photograph was taken. I wonder then if you have the opportunity whether you could raise the concerns about the milestone deterioration with your readers and see whether there would be any interest in undertaking a repainting project?"

Something that came as a surprise to us is that Formby has 2 Milemarkers remaining. We would be keen to hear if anyone knows of others that might have been missed. Also, if you can help with John Armstrong's request about repainting or if you can help apply for listing status, please contact our newsroom via:- News24@SouthportReporter.Com.

The 4 Sefton district Milestones currently known to the Milestone Society are as follows:-

► 1. A Lancashire County Council Stone Triangle Marker is located on Lady Green, Tristram's Farm, within Ince Blundell Parish, on the A565, OS Grid Reference:- 'SD 3173 0376.' This is recorded as being installed in the late 1890ís into the early 1900.

It reads:-

Legend left face:- "TO / LIVERPOOL / 10 MILES"
Legend centre face:- No markings.
Legend right face:- "TO / SOUTHPORT / 10½ MILES"
Legend top:- "INCE BLUNDELL"

National ID:- LA_LVSP10

2. This is the marker we have been alerted to. The Lancashire County Council Stone Triangle Marker is located on the verge of Liverpool Road (B5424) 200m W of the roundabout, within Little Altcar Parish and was installed in the late 1890ís to early 1900 by Lancashire County Council. OS Grid Reference:- 'SD 3030 0593.'

It reads:-

Legend left face:- "SOUTHPORT / 8½ MILES"
Legend centre face:- No markings.
Legend right face:- "LIVERPOOL / 12 MILES"

National ID:- LA_LVSP12

3. The other marker located within Formby can be found on Church Road (B5424). The Lancashire County Council Stone Triangle Marker is located on the pavement of the near to the junction with Davenham Road, by No. 49. OS Grid Reference:- 'SD 3010 0741.' We are told that it was erected in the late 1890ís into the early 1900, by Lancashire County Council.

It reads:-

Legend left face:- "SOUTH(PORT / 7½ MILES)"
Legend centre face:- No text was used on this section.
Legend right face:- "(LIVERP)OOL / (13) MILES"

National ID:- LA_LVSP13

4. This is the most interesting and the most in danger of being lost/ It is located in Southport. on the A570, at Meols Park Roundabout. OS Grid Reference:- 'SD 3600 1556.' This is a unique iron cast post that was installed in 1892, by Lancashire County Council.

Legend left face:- "{fan} / SOUTHPORT / 2 / MILES"
Legend centre face:- "1892"
Legend right face:- "{fan} / WIGAN / 18 / MILES / {dotted line} / ORMSKIRK / 6 / MILES"
Legend top:- No text was used on this section.
Legend items of note:- "BOROUGH / OF / SOUTHPORT" on the reverse.

National ID:- LA_SPOK02

If you know any more information about these markers, please do let our editor know, via emailing:- News24@SouthportReporter.Com.

Hundreds attend events on Merseyside bypass proposals

NEARLY 600 people attended events in Merseyside this week to find out more about proposals for a new bypass to the Port of Liverpool. Highways England held two public events at the SING PLUS Centre in Seaforth and the Park Hotel, in Netherton, on Tuesday and Thursday, where people were able to drop in at any time during the afternoon and evening to meet the team developing the plans. Environmental specialists have begun carrying out surveys as part of design work for a new bypass, investigating habitats for otters, birds and bats which would need to be protected by law during construction work. Work to investigate air quality, noise levels and ground conditions will also be taking place over the next few months. Around 23,000 vehicles currently use the existing route of the A5036 every day, passing hundreds of homes and several schools in Litherland and Netherton. They include around 2,500 HGVs travelling to and from the port; equivalent to one lorry joining the A5036 every 30 seconds. The proposed new 3 mile dual carriageway would take traffic away from communities by Church Road and Dunnings Bridge Road, reducing congestion and making journeys quicker and safer for residents and drivers. A public consultation on the preliminary scheme design is due to take place in 2020, ahead of a Development Consent Order application being submitted to the Planning Inspectorate for permission to build the road. If the scheme is approved then construction work could start by the end of 2022.

Carl Stockton, senior project manager at Highways England, said:- "We'd like to thank everyone who took the time to attend our public events, and we've also sent out newsletters to almost 20,000 homes and businesses to keep people updated on our proposals. We'll be carrying out surveys during the autumn as part of the design work to develop our plans and need to dig some bore holes and small trenches in the park to assess ground conditions, so we're keen to let people know what's happening. We will hold a formal consultation once we have a preliminary design for the bypass so that everyone affected by the scheme can have their say on the plans."

The Port of Liverpool is already the busiest port in the North West and the amount of freight travelling through it is expected to grow significantly over the next few years. The proposed bypass through a section of Rimrose Valley park would connect Princess Way, at the Port of Liverpool, to the motorway network at Switch Island. The noise and air quality surveys taking place over the next few weeks will require temporary monitoring sensors to be installed at several locations on the A5036 and in Rimrose Valley park. Small trenches and bore holes will also need to be dug to investigate ground conditions in and around Rimrose Valley. These will be filled in and the land will be returned to its present condition once surveys have taken place. More details on the proposals for the new A5036 bypass to the Port of Liverpool are available at:- HighwaysEngland.Co.UK.

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