A HERITAGE statement submitted by the developer of the old council buildings in Watling Street shows the site’s history.

In 1734 the Marshall family set up Baron’s Croft salt works on site, complete with pansheds, storehouses and offices, a reservoir for brine, and a cistern for the refining of rock salt.

Some 40 years later, industrial housing was built nearby – some of the first close-packed homes in Northwich, many of which featured workshops.

PICTURES AND VIDEO >>> Demolition underway in Watling Street

The salt works was in situ until the 1880s, with trade peaking at the turn of the 19th century before fizzling out.

The statement adds: “Between 1882 and 1898 most of the structures associated with Marshall’s salt works disappear and new buildings appear in the north west corner of the proposal site and paths leading to the river in the eastern half.

“These were demolished by 1965, and by 1977 Watling Street and Chesterway had been built, at the expense of the historic fabric and street patterns, to provide a route between Town Bridge and the station bypassing the town centre.

READ >>> Solutions to illegal traveller sites pile up across Northwich

“Within this time period, the proposal site had also been developed to accommodate the county council offices.”

The offices were vacated in 2011. An adult day care centre was also run at a separate building on site until 2016.

The county council coat of arms shield, mounted on the eastern frontage of the building, will be removed and handed back to CWAC within the next few weeks.