The campaign to stop Liverpool City Council selling off the meadows of Sefton Park

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Packed Public Meeting Demands Rethink

Public Meeting Andre map What Next?A packed Public Meeting  called again for Liverpool City Council to rethink its decision to advertise Sefton Park Meadows  to developers as a potential site for luxury housing. Over 120 local people  came to show their anger and frustration that the Council  has overruled 1,300 written objections and an e-petition of over 7,200 people.  It has become clear the the decision to sell  has come from Mayor Joe Anderson and  the Public Meeting are calling on him and the Council to draw back from  selling one of the most valuable conservation area and heritage greenspaces in the city.

Local people were brought up to date with new historical research by ex-univerity lecturer John Middleton showing Edouard Andre’s final design for Sefton Park did not include villa development on the Meadows, and that the City Council specifically refused to accept bids for housing on this site at the time.  John also revealed research work on the original tree plantation design around the Meadows, which closely mirrors the design for trees across Sefton Park by Andre as detailed in his landscape handbook ‘L’Art des Jardins’.

Local people at the meeting were clear in their views that the Meadows IS part of Sefton Park, has historic, aesthetic, ecological and cultural value and should be withdrawn from sale.  Many ideas came out of the meeting to press the Council to back down.  The campaign group will take as many of these forward as they can AND asked local people to do their bit to keep up the pressure on the council.

Check our Facebook page for reaction to the Public Meeting and have your say!

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Meadows heritage design revealed at Public Meeting Wed 13th Nov

JohnMiddletonSefton Park Meadows campaigners will be revealing original Park landscape maps showing the Victorian designer’s final intention to keep the Meadows as open space.  
PUBLIC MEETING – 7pm  Wed 13th Nov
Come and find out more, as well as an update on the campaign’s renewed battle with Liverpool City Council to oppose any planning application for housing development.
Retired university lecturer John Middleton will be showing the results of his research into council documents which demonstrate that Edouard Andre intended to keep Sefton Park Meadows as Green Open Space.
He has discovered:-
– A map dated 1875 by Edourd Andre showing the final Sefton Park design,  the plots of land for sale and the plots already sold. The Meadows are shown clearly to have no plots for sale.
– That offers to buy the meadows between 1879 and 1890 were rebuffed by the Parks and Improvements Committee of the City Council because they always wanted to keep it as open grassland.
The Map and copies of the original council meeting minutes will be available at the public meeting.
Mayor Anderson has argued that there was always an intention to build on the Meadows, and publicised an earlier Andre map drawn in 1867 for the Sefton Park competition to win the contract . It was revised to the later, finalised maps, which were used to actually construct Sefton Park.
John is also researching the case that the Meadows themselves were actually part of the Park design by the world renowned Parisian landscaper Edouard Andre.  John will show how the way its trees were planted is exactly the design style recommended in Andre’s own  handbook “L’Art des Jardins”.
This information has been passed  to English Heritage and they are currently assessing it along with our application to extend the Grade 1 listing to the Meadows. We are clear that the Meadows has the same international heritage value and is part of Sefton Park.

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Grade 1 Application in Progress

Campaigner John Middleton has applied to English Heritage for the Meadows to be granted Grade I listed status.  John maintains that they form “the last remnants of a  green cordon of grand boulevards, which connected the Ring of Parks enacted by Liverpool City Council in 1862.”

He goes on,  “The Meadows are part of the 19th century plan for a Ring of Parks and they lead to the next link, Calderstones Park. The Queens Drive entrance to Sefton Park are a deliberately designed, beautiful and sweepingly graceful entrance to the Park and should be given the same protection as the already listed, stone gate entrances at Sefton Park Rd (leading to Princes Park) and Aigburth Vale (leading to Otterspool).

We have asked English Heritage to fast track consideration of this application, ahead of any planning application from a housing developer.  We are also emphasising the distinctive grand design of its double row of lime trees that protected a broad walk, and used to go right around Queens Drive. This can be seen in photos from 1906 at Queen Drive in Walton, before the trees were felled to make way for the dual carriageway.

Double Lime Trees

Distinctive double  row of lime trees