New Ferry Explosion
Several buildings were damaged during an explosion in a furniture shop

Ground work planned at Wirral gas explosion site

Dan Whelan

New Ferry residents could soon see movement at Bebington Road more than three years on from a gas explosion that destroyed part of the street, after the council lodged an application to level the land in preparation for redevelopment.

The gas explosion at a local furniture shop in 2017 destroyed six businesses and left almost 90 people homeless.  

Last October, the shop’s owner Pascal Blasio was sentenced to 20 years in jail after being found guilty of causing the explosion in an attempt to claim an insurance payout. 

Wirral Council submitted an outline application in March for 45 homes on two acres at Woodhead Street car park, one of three sites impacted by the explosion. 

The other two sites are planned to see almost 6,000 sq ft of retail space and 23 apartments brought forward on Bebington Road, while a further 5,000 sq ft of retail space and another 11 apartments are proposed for land off Boundary Road.  

Architect BDP, in collaboration with Wirral Council and Homes England, drew up three options for the redevelopment of the three sites, and the preferred option will see the construction of 79 homes in total.  

Woodhead car park and some parts of Bebington Road are council-owned, but other parcels of land are under multiple private ownerships. A planning statement for the project states that the local authority has a £1.3m fund in place “to assemble the sites for redevelopment and is currently in negotiations with many of the landowners”. 

The latest application, for engineering work to level the land, is yet to be determined by the council. 

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If that explosion had happened in central Liverpool, the land would have been redeveloped immediately. The LCR doesn`t care about anywhere, except Liverpool.

By Heswall