Tributes paid to Salford Quays ‘visionary’

Peter Hunter, a key figure in the transformation of the derelict docklands, has died at the age of 84.

Hunter, one of the founding partners of Shepheard Epstein Hunter, drew up the masterplan for Salford Quays after the city council had acquired the 225-acre site from the Manchester Ship Canal Company in 1981.

SEH’s plan sparked the site’s transformation from derelict docklands into the home of the BBC and ITV, among others. 

Steven Pidwill, director at SEH and one of Hunter’s former colleagues said: “I worked closely alongside Peter in the early embryonic days of the Quays when the water in the docks was polluted and occasionally caught fire, and most people thought the scheme was a hopeless, wild idea.

“Peter had a selfless entrepreneurial magic about him and a genius for building relationships which bore fruit brilliantly at the Quays.”

Salford City Mayor Paul Dennett also paid tribute to Hunter, calling him a “visionary”.

“Peter leaves an incredible legacy that transformed the face of Salford,” Dennett said. “He brought his experience of regeneration from London Docklands and first came up with a concept for Salford Quays in 1982. 

“It has been incredible to see Peter’s vision for Salford Quays become reality over the years. This was unthinkable back in the 1980s and shows how visionary he was.”  

As well as being recognised for his role in the transformation of Salford Quays, Hunter was awarded an OBE for his urban regeneration work in Laganside, Northern Ireland.

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You can tell that Steve Pidwell’s comments on Peter Hunter come from the heart…lovely to hear.

By Jess A

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