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Historic Ship Inn demolished on police advice


THE former historic Ship Inn at Walton was demolished by housing developers on the advice of police after a wall collapsed during work on the site, according to local councillor Paul Kennedy.

Contractors were working on the conversion of the old pub into apartments when the collapse occurred – forcing police to close the A56 Chester Road to traffic.

The development, by Elan Homes, involved building 14 four and five bedroomed houses behind the old pub, which in recent years had been used as an Indian restaurant, but which had been closed for some time.

Chester Road was completely closed between The Stag and Walton Lea Crematorium for some time, causing lengthy traffic delays in the area.

Cllr Kennedy, (pictured) who represents the area, visited the site shortly after the collapse.kennedypaul.jpg

He said: “I spoke to a structural engineer on site who told me the police had said the building should be demolished as a matter of public safety and I can see why the police would say that – the building was in a perilous state.

“But some local residents are annoyed because the only reason they did not object to the development was that they believed the old pub would be restored.

“I am reserving judgement until I see the planning application that comes in.

“It won’t affect the rest of the site – work is continuing on the houses. But it would be good if the developer could recreate the Ship Inn as apartments, as originally intended, as this would give some character to the site frontage.

“The main thing, however, is that no-one was killed or injured.”



About Author

Experienced journalist for more than 40 years. Managing Director of magazine publishing group with three in-house titles and on-line daily newspaper for Warrington. Experienced writer, photographer, PR consultant and media expert having written for local, regional and national newspapers. Specialties: PR, media, social networking, photographer, networking, advertising, sales, media crisis management. Director Warrington Chamber of Commerce Patron Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace. Trustee Warrington Disability Partnership. Former Chairman of Warrington Town FC.


  1. Cllr Kennedy, says;
    “I spoke to a structural engineer on site who told me the police had said the building should be demolished as a matter of public safety and I can see why the police would say that – the building was in a perilous state.”

    What made the police think the ‘building should be demolished as a matter of public safety’? I’ts hardly credible that a police officer would have suggested that the building be demolished without first having spoken to the structural engineer. As Cllr Kennedy spoke to a structural engineer on site, perhaps he would like to tell us what the structural engineer’s opinion was on the state of the building?
    There are some interesting comments re this news item on the Forum, local life section, “another one bites the dust”.

  2. Everyone shares your relief Paul no one was injured or killed, during the partial collapse of the Ship Inn on 10 September. However, many are and remain dismayed a locally listed building and landmark, reached such a perilous condition, requiring its complete demolition in the interests of public safety. Apparently after “the contractor had been working on plasterwork”. Were any temporary works in place ahead of this activity?
    If, as has been alleged “the developer’s willingness to retain the building is a matter of record in the planning application”. Does that mean the Council was indifferent on achieving that objective? If not what measures did the Council take to ensure the proposed conversion into three dwellings was appropriate for the work, bearing in mind the building’s age and status as a locally listed building? Were drawings submitted for the Council’s Conservation Officer comment and approval? Surely the developer was not given free rein to do whatever conversion they liked to a locally listed building without some input from the Council?

  3. Don’t you think it’s in the public interest Paul to ‘name and shame’ the structural engineer who first assessed this building as being fit for conversion and also make sure that the person who carried out the risk assessment before the plasterer was sent into that building, never works in that capacity again?

  4. Is this type of almost regular occurrence perhaps one of the contributing factors to Warrington has been labelled the worst town in Britain for culture vultures? (see today’s Times)

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