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Full steam ahead for salt works
4:10pm Tuesday 7th August 2012 in News
THE first step in the regeneration of Northwich can finally be taken now a funding shortfall has been addressed.
Council bosses approved a funding package for the restoration of the Lion Salt Works at a meeting on Thursday.
Clr Stuart Parker, Cheshire West and Chester Council’s (CWAC) executive member for culture and recreation, said:”Northwich is at the starting point of a regeneration journey, with Memorial Court and Barons Quay among the projects coming forward.
“Lion Salt Works is the first step of this exciting journey.”
Councillors from CWAC’s executive group unanimously agreed to enter a £5,652,428 contract with Wates Construction for the project to transform the UK’s last surviving open pan salt works into a heritage visitor attraction.
The figure has risen from £5 million because of the complexity of restoring a scheduled ancient monument.
The shortfall is being met by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and CWAC, which is also contributing £3 million to the project.
The remainder of the £8.8 million cost is being met by a £5 million HLF grant and £200,000 from the Manage+ European Programme.
Wates Construction, which has committed to taking on apprentices and employing local firms for small sub-contract works, will begin the restoration later this month.
Clr Parker said: “This is the culmination of a long journey that began in 1986 when the Lion Salt Works closed, having been operational since 1842.
“The site was purchased by the former Vale Royal Borough Council to stop it from falling into desrepair, but sadly this is precisely what happened.
“It has been a long process, but now the commencement works are complete there is nothing holding us back from making a start on this long-awaited restoration project.”