Council raises Flag Market hopes

The long-awaited revamp of the historic Flag Market public square in Preston city centre appears closer to becoming reality after the council issued a tender brief for a contractor to deliver the project.

Funding was approved from the North West Development Agency over a year ago but there have been numerous delays to the plans as detail was ironed out. Earlier plans for electronic banners placed around the square were dropped.

The brief published by Preston City Council this week explains the contract, with a budget of between £3m and £5.5m, is now being treated as urgent with a start date set for May 2010.

Three phases of works totalling 125,000 sq ft are envisaged for the space outside the Harris Museum. The first phase will be the largest at 80,000 sq ft followed by two phases of 25,000 sq ft and 20,000 sq ft.

The project involves the lifting, reconditioning and relaying of the existing setted square and the laying of a natural stone pavement. There will be new street furniture and refurbishment and relocation of monuments in the flag market and surrounding streets.

The council will install a series of flag poles around the 800-year-old square which will be used to carry the flags of twin and visiting cities.

Preston's next Guild celebrations take place in 2012, creating a deadline for short-term work in the city centre.

  • Contact Andrew Dobson at Preston City Council 01772 906 778 or

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