Press release: SAVE vision for Lime Street

11 May 2016

Press release: SAVE vision for Lime Street

As part of the ongoing campaign to save Liverpool's Futurist Cinema, SAVE releases a new panorama showing the whole street front revised and restored with shops and places to eat.

The panorama, published today, shows the street of historic buildings in the city centre and the façade of the much loved Futurist cinema brought back to life and not demolished.

Click here for the high-res version of the panorama

Prepared by an ARB registered architect the image is designed to show what can be achieved here with imagination and celebration of the existing buildings and townscape.
Under the current proposals more than 10 historic buildings will be demolished and replaced with a much taller 11 storey student housing led development.
Director of SAVE, Henrietta Billings said: “This alternative vision shows that this part of Lime Street can be regenerated and improved – without whole scale demolition. Imagination and understanding of the existing buildings could achieve a sustainable and sympathetic solution that celebrates Liverpool’s heritage.”
President of SAVE, Marcus Binney said: “This is a key piece of Liverpool townscape first shown on a map in 1780 and reaching its glory moment in Edwardian times with the two handsome listed pubs at the ends of the block and the 1912 Futurist in the centre.  It should have been made a Conservation Area 10 years ago as Historic England suggested. 
“Lime Street and Rensaw Street form one of the great thoroughfares of Liverpool linking the station and the cathedrals. Fine buildings and vistas survive, all worthy of Conservation Area status and revival.  This is a classical battle over townscape, the kind of battle that has been won again and again in English cities over 40 years and must not be lost now.  Now SAVE has been granted leave for a hearing in the Court of Appeal the importance of the issue is recognised.”

A Court of Appeal hearing into the demolition of the terrace is scheduled to take place before the end of May 2016.
Planning permission for the demolition of a terrace of more than 10 buildings and the Futurist cinema was approved by Liverpool City Council in 2015 and SAVE has challenged the decision on heritage grounds.
Numerous objections have been raised against the £35m proposal for student flats, from Merseyside Civic Society, the Historic Cinema Theatres Association and the Victorian Society, as well as SAVE.  A public petition to Save the Futurist Cinema gathered over 4,000 signatures. 
SAVE is continuing to appeal for funds to support the campaign. We need £10,000 to cover our legal costs and so far we have had over 100 separate donations and have raised nearly £5,000. 
Please help us reach our target by donating here:

We have also published advice from an independent structural engineer stating that the façade of the Futurist – the historic 1912 cinema - can be saved.
In agreement with the city council, SAVE commissioned The Morton Partnership, independent structural engineers who specialise in historic buildings, to inspect the main elevation of the Futurist cinema at the beginning of May.
Ed Morton, Director of The Morton Partnership has set out a clear strategy for safeguarding and retaining the façade. 
The site, which lies in the buffer zone of the World Heritage Site, is bounded at either end by two listed pubs, and on the opposite side of Lime Street is the listed ABC Cinema.
The Vines public house at the southern end of the site is a Grade II* listed building of 1907, described by Pevsner as ‘riotously baroque’, whilst at the northern boundary the Crown Hotel is a Grade II listed art nouveau building with extravagant stucco panels proudly bearing the Walker’s Brewery name.
Within the vicinity of the site are several other listed buildings, including Lime Street Station, the Adelphi Hotel, the former North Western Hotel, and St George’s Hall, the latter being Grade I listed, as well as the William Brown Conservation Area.
Note to editors:
1. For more information please contact Henrietta Billings, Director at SAVE on 0207 253 3500 or
2. To view  the independent structural report by Ed Morton, click here:

3. The appeal relates to Liverpool City Council (‘LCC’) and Neptune Developments’ proposals to demolish more than ten buildings on Liverpool Lime Street, which is located in the World Heritage Site Buffer Zone.
SAVE considers that insufficient consultation took place before the Council determined the future of Liverpool’s gateway street from which the famous railway station takes its name.
SAVE also considers that the issue of how LCC consults with the UK’s World Heritage Committee and DCMS is crucial in order to protect Liverpool’s World Heritage Site in the future. This also has wider importance for other World Heritage Sites in England and Wales. The current system of consultation is not clear and is not achieving the necessary level of protection.
4. To support SAVE’s campaign please donate here:
5. SAVE Britain’s Heritage has been campaigning for historic buildings since its formation in 1975 by a group of architectural historians, writers, journalists and planners. It is a strong, independent voice in conservation, free to respond rapidly to emergencies and to speak out loud for the historic built environment.
Press release issued by SAVE Britain’s Heritage
70 Cowcross Street, London EC1M 6EJ
Registered Charity 269129
Tel. 020 7253 3500  Email
Follow SAVE on Twitter: @SAVEBrit
Donate to SAVE via Justgiving

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