Sefton Park Boating Lake Shortchanged: A Half-Done Restoration?

08.2.16 Sefton Park boating lake with dumped bike The upheavals as Sefton Park is ‘restored’ have been grim. Trees and habitats destroyed, birdlife disrupted and months of mud and noise – though at least, we all believed, for future benefit. But will the Boating Lake, largest and most public of the waterways, now remain a dumping ground for waste as before? Apparently the money may be running out. If it does, I’d say, so is our civic pride.
08.06.27  Sefton Park boating lake with heron and rubbish
Is this (above) the view of Sefton Park Boating Lake which will stay with us after all the heritage and landscape restoration is finished? Will the people of Liverpool, already said by Bill Bryson to have celebrated a ‘Festival of Litter’, permit what is arguably the City’s most significant park to retain within it a dumping ground for anything their careless fellow citizens have over the decades jettisoned into the Boating Lake?
… and this proposed ‘cost-cutting’, so it is said, all for a saving which is probably less than the amount already spent on destroying perfectly healthy trees in Sefton Park because they ‘block the view’?
The photographs below show some of the garbage which lies below the normal waterline of the lake, together with a view of the area which the dredger has cleaned up (by the top island), and the boating fence which, as things stand, may delineate the divide between the restored area and the much larger part of the lake which it’s feared will be left in neglect.
Will the powers-that-be ensure, despite the rumours, that the whole lake will be cleared? Or has this City really still so little civic pride? We await the evidence that all will be well, hopefully very soon.
08.05.18 Sefton Park boating lake with swan and rubbish
08.05.10  Sefton Park boating lake with dredging machinery
08.05.26 Sefton Park boating lake half dredged
08.2.17 Sefton Park boating lake with dividing fence by island (icy)
Read more articles on Sefton Park
and see more photographs at Camera & Calendar.

Posted on July 1, 2008, in Liverpool And Merseyside, People And Places, Photographs And Images, Travel and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. I agree with Graham. I live near the park so had the misfortune to see many workmen consistently standing or lying around. It would have been laughable if it wasn’t our money being wasted. I was shocked at the bare faced cheek of up to 12 “workmen” at a time standing, chatting, sunbathing or one individual who seemed to be constantly cycling around the park in his work gear training for some event.
    It is only in the past couple of weeks (early Oct 09) that workmen appear to be working!
    Who in the council, allocated this obviously overpriced contract. Surely there are firms out there who could have done it cheaper (and quicker) by employing workers who work a fair day for a fair days pay.

  2. WHY IS IT TAKING SO LONG? WHY DOES IT SEEM TO BE THAT THERE ARE PLENTY OF ‘WORKMEN’ BUT NOT A LOT OF WORK BEING DONE. I WALK MY DOG THERE EVERY DAY AND AM APPALED AT THE LACK OF ACTIVITY.
    WHO ‘PLANNED’ THE WORK WHERE ARE THE MANAGERS TO CHECK THAT THE WORKERS ARE ACTUALY WORKING OR ARE THEY ‘WORKING’ JUST AS HARD. THE EFFORT THAT IS NOT BEING MADE AT THE END OF THE LAKE IS CAUSING IT TO BE DIFFICULT TO CROSS THE ROAD. I HOPE SOMEONE IS NOT KILLED THERE BUT IT WILL ONLY BE A MATTER OF TIME.
    THE WORK THAT HAS BEEN DONE SO FAR COULD HAVE BEEN DONE IN HALF OF THE TIME IT HAS TAKEN. BUT THERE IS NO BOSSES TO OVERSEE THE MEN.
    IT WILL SOON BE BREEDING SEASON AND ANOTHER YEAR OF NO NEW WILDLIFE TO WATCH GROW UP AND BE FUTURE YEARS STOCK BUT STILL THE ‘WORKMEN’ STAND OR SIT AND TAKE THEIR TIME, THEY ARE GETTING PAID TOO GOOD A PAY FOR SO LITTLE RESULT.
    OH TO HAVE A JOB LIKE THAT. MUST GO NOW I AM BEGINING TO FEEL ANOYED BY IT ALL.

  3. PS. from Hilary ~
    It looks as though some progress is now being made.
    I have just today [9 July] received the following information, here slightly abbreviated, from Paul Scragg, Liverpool City Council Parks Manager, to whom thanks:
    I write to outline the current position with regard to the restoration project at Sefton Park which is currently underway and will continue into 2009.
    £5 million is being invested over a period of 18 months which began January 2008. One of the main components is the restoration of all watercourses, a number of which no longer function properly and are in very poor condition. This is an ongoing programme of work which will take time and unfortunately involves unsightly activity and impact.
    The lake is not being refilled at present. The penstock is open and the water is draining away to allow for work to the exposed banks. With the penstock fully-open a shallow amount of water remains in the lake and this rises and falls with the weather but this does not impact on the work. On at least three occasions the outfall has been blocked in acts of wilful disruption by members of the public.
    The clearance of surface debris from the lake bed has been specified and quotations for the work received. An order is due to be placed in due course. This work needs to be timed with other activities.
    The lake edge repairs are progressing well and on programme but the lake will not be refilled until the new jetty is built later this year.
    In accordance with advice on fish welfare from the Environment Agency we will not be restocking the lake until 6 months after the lake has been refilled.
    We will continue to try and keep people informed as the project progresses as we know how important the park is to all its users.
    Paul Scragg
    Enquiries: 0151 233 3000 (Liverpool Direct)

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