Garden festival park restored

Langtree has completed the first phase of its proposals to regenerate a derelict 90-acre site in Liverpool, prior to its opening to the public late in July. (GALLERY)

The owner and developer of the site in Otterspool, where the International Garden Festival took place in 1984, has created and installed four new bridges, 2km of newly created pathways, 5.25m litres of water for 10 lakes, 5,000 decorative pagoda roof tiles sourced from China and the planting of more than five million wild flower seeds.

The £3.7m restoration was funded by North West Development Agency after an extended planning and consultation process. The ongoing long term management of the site will be delivered by the Land Trust working in association with Groundwork Merseyside.

The project team included Kirkby-based Mayfield Construction, Planit-IE, as landscape advisors, and WCP Associates.

Liverpool Garden FestivalPrior to work starting in February last year, much of the detail such as the yellow submarine, Japanese summer houses and ornaments from the festival 27 years ago had fallen victim to arson, vandalism and thieving. A dragon's head, pictured left, and one Chinese pagoda was all that remained.

Japanese landscape architect Satoru Izawa was flown in especially to support the restoration of one of the site's original features, the Japanese Garden, which stands alongside an oriental garden featuring a fully restored Chinese pagoda and Moon Wall.

The second phase of the project will see Langtree work with residential developers in bringing forward up to 1,374 new homes on 25 acres located on the area of the former festival hall dome.

John Downes, managing director at Langtree, said: "We believe that we are about create one of the most exciting residential schemes in the country set within a fantastic new contemporary park taking design cues from great European examples.

"Aided by a first class design team, and with the help and support of partners including Liverpool City Council, the North West Development Agency and the Land Trust, we have now completed the breathtaking transformation of the park.

"Over the next few years, the creation of a modern residential community on the 25 acres around the former Festival Hall Dome area will complete our plans and fulfill our ongoing commitment to bring the former Garden Festival site back to life."

Click image to launch gallery

Your Comments

Read our comments policy here

Superb job. Long overdue but looks worth the wait.

By Parkie

this is going to be a great place to live, and just 5 minutes from city center. brilliant

By tony

So excited about the garden’s reinstatement. Very happy memories of visiting the Festival Gardens with friends and also taking parties of schoolchildren on day trips. Cannot wait for the opening!

By Val

Twice now this site has benefited from significant sums of public funding, lets hope the improvements prove to be sustainable this time. But as Michael Heseltine said on the news report this afternoon, yes it looks magnificent but the purpose of this scheme, as with the multiplicity of other government and EU funded initiatives in Merseyside over the last 50 years or so, is ultimately about job creation. Yes, it could be seen as an extravagance but if it helps pull in jobs and into Merseyside and puts the local economy onto a surer footing it will be money well spent.

By Landscape