The Newsletter of the Port Sunlight Residents and Conservation Society
Issue No. 4 Established 2004 August 2005
Welcome to the fourth issue of The Fountain. This newsletter is published by members of the Port
Sunlight Residents and Conservation Society (PSRCS) for the benefit of all those who live and work
within the village or who have an association with the village of Port Sunlight.
Residents Society Meetings
PSRCS meetings are held at the Port Sunlight Social Club (formerly the Men’s Club) in the Lyceum.
With the kind consent of their committee the PSRCS hold regular meetings at 7.30pm in the Barnish
Lounge on the second Tuesday of each month. The Social Club management kindly extend the
bar facilities to our members for a post-meeting drink. The entrance is in Bridge Street near the
crossing over The Dell (the door inside the porch). Why not come along and join us? Next
meeting is on 13.09.05.
So what’s on at the next PSRCS meeting?
13th September 2005 - Guest speaker: Professor John Tarn, Professor of Architecture
David Peacock, Village Watch Co-ordinator reports that the notification / alert system has worked
well to date. Residents are requested to notify their Super-block Village Watch Leader a.s.a.p. if
they observe anything suspicious or if they are a victim of a crime, after having first notified the
Police. The alert system then should allow each Super-block Village Watch Leader to be notified
of the potential risk to further properties in the village and this enables them to alert the residents
on their block. In this way the maximum number of residents can be alerted of a potential security
risk in the minimum amount of time. Additional volunteers to act as Super-block Village Watch
Leaders are asked to contact David Peacock via PSRCS c/o Port Sunlight Social Club, Bridge
Street or via firstname.lastname@example.org
The next meeting for Super-block Village Watch Leaders will be held on September 29th 2005 at
7.30 pm at the Port Sunlight Social Club (formerly the Men’s Club) in the Lyceum.
In the event of an unfortunate need to report a criminal act, some useful telephone numbers are
0151 709 6010 Merseyside Police (24 hour service)
0151 777 2080 Police Call Centre – make sure you get a crime reference number. (For urgent calls
– 24 hour service)
0151 777 2530 Bromborough Police desk (Non urgent calls and not 24 Hour service)
0800 555 111 Crime Stoppers (This line maintains caller anonymity)
PLEASE REMEMBER TO CALL 999 IN AN EMERGENCY
Victory for PSRCS as the Wharf Street Wall is rejected.
A Public Inquiry has decided that the industrial style development for the site between Wharf
Street and Water Street would have a “harmful impact on the traditional vernacular character of
the Port Sunlight Conservation Area”.
The Inquiry was held at Wallasey Town Hall for five days in June. Port Sunlight Village Trust (PSVT)
and Miller Homes had requested the Inquiry after Wirral Borough Council Planning Committee
rejected the Wall Style Development on Wharf Street and the conversion of the vacant offices on
Wood Street (formerly occupied by the Data Exchange) in January.
The Inspector that carried out the inquiry blocked the Wharf Street building; however, he
approved the conversion of the Wood Street offices.
The PSVT had argued that both developments were needed to raise money to continue to
maintain the Village’s gardens and public buildings. It also explained that the industrial style was
dictated by English Heritage.
PSRCS was allowed to make representations at the Inquiry and question witnesses. We argued
that the design for the Wharf Street site was inappropriate for the Village. One member described
it as being like an East German army barracks. We also argued that to build 146 flats and houses
in one small corner of the village would cause many problems such as increased traffic, parking,
and noise and would adversely affect tourism.
We also opposed the conversion of the Wood Street offices and the new build in similar style next
to it because of its design and particularly the effect that such a high density of flats would have
on the neighbouring area.
We argued strongly that the Chair of English Heritage had clearly stated in correspondence that
the traditional style was equally acceptable. We also argued that there was no financial crisis at
the PSVT and that they had sufficient assets to funds the work required. Lionel Bolland accepted
the PSVT does not have any short term financial difficulties.
Unilever Faberge also opposed both developments especially the Wood Street site as they
overlooked the factory and the new residents may be given reason to complain as the factory
operates 24 hours a day. Unilever’s opposition is so great that they have offered to provide
funding up to £9 million to the PSVT provided that it does not develop the Wood Street site.
At the time of writing it is not clear whether the PSVT will accept this offer. However, we believe
that it is unlikely that the Wood Street development will go ahead.
The PSVT submitted a large amount of written and verbal evidence to the Inquiry, some of which is
of concern to the PSRCS. Its surveyor’s report examined the amount of maintenance work carried
out on public buildings and what was required, e.g. for Hulme Hall and The Lyceum.
The report identified that much of the work planned when the PSVT was set up in 1999 has not
been carried out. The Surveyor also said that work carried out was “a result of failure rather than
of planning”. We urge the PSVT to put this right as a matter of urgency.
The PSVT has committed to producing a conservation plan for the Village. At the Inquiry Lionel
Bolland promised that PSRCS would be involved in the work to put this plan together. Again we
urge the PSVT to press ahead with this as soon as possible.
There is already planning permission to build on the Wharf Street site; however, the future of the
site is uncertain. We shall be contacting Miller Homes and the PSVT to request an input into the
design of any new proposals. We believe that this is a reasonable request as the Planning
Inspector stated in his report, “I regard the views of local people including those represented by
the PSRCS to be a valid part of the debate about the appropriateness of the design approach by
Finally, we would like to thank everybody who has supported us in the campaign against the
Wharf Street Wall – the outcome shows that the views of residents and those who care about Port
Sunlight count! (Article submitted by Save Port Sunlight Campaign Group)
Planning For The Future
The PSRCS are currently petitioning the Port Sunlight Village Trust (PSVT) for a “holistic plan” for the
long-term future of the Village. This would encompass not only the conservation needs of the
public buildings in the Village but also those of the green spaces and the potential business,
leisure and tourism development. Thus ensuring the Village remains a thriving community for both
its residents and the businesses at work within it.
Bridge Inn Licence Application
In keeping with the Licensing Act 2003, The Spirit Group, owners of The Bridge Inn made a licence
application to extend the pub’s hours of opening from 7am to 2am / 3am. The Council
Committee which grants the appropriate licences to Public Houses met on Wednesday 10 th
August at Wallasey Town Hall.
Residents who live in properties close to the Bridge Inn conducted a sampling of resident opinion
in response to this application. Of the sample 80 residents contacted in The Ginnel, Bath Street,
Wharf Street, Water Street, Riverside and Bolton Road (partially sampled) it was quite clear how
people felt. The sample opinion poll recorded 100% opposition to the extension of licensing hours.
The minutes of the Licensing Committee meeting have at the time of writing yet to be published
on the website, so the following is subject to correction:
Pub licensing hours will be until 1am plus 30 minutes drinking up time
Windows must be kept closed when music is playing
It is likely that there will be a number of further conditions attached.
(Article submitted by local residents)
Post Office to Village Tearooms
In our last issue of The Fountain it was reported that Wirral Borough Council had recently received
an application seeking permission for a change in business use for a property in Greendale Road
from a Post Office to village tearooms. Shortly after The Fountain’s publication planning
permission was granted and the former post office has now been transformed into a village
teashop. We wish the new owners every success in their new venture.
Ritzy Nightclub Plans Update
Port Sunlight residents have frequently asked the PSRCS to be kept informed if they learnt of any
future plans for the use of the former Ritzy Nightclub site. Despite the distance many residents
were regularly disturbed by noise (sometimes arising from public disorders) or they became the
victims of petty crimes perpetrated by night clubbers walking home through Port Sunlight during
the early hours of the morning.
The University Pension Fund (USS) who owns the Croft Retail and Leisure Park recently submitted a
planning application to WMBC which would have effectively brought an end to the building
being used as a nightclub. The plans indicated that the building would be restructured to enable
its use for other leisure purposes instead. Unfortunately due to technical problems this application
was withdrawn. However it has since been slightly amended and then resubmitted. It is now due
to be discussed by the Planning Committee on Thursday 25th August 2005 at 6.15pm at Wallasey
The Annual Village Fete took place on Sunday 17th July this year. It was a great fun day out for all
the family and certainly there was something there for everyone.
Luckily the sun shone all day enabling everyone to enjoy the weather whilst browsing the stalls,
listening to the relaxing music and catching up with friends and neighbours whilst cream teas
were served in the Church. During the afternoon the winners of the garden and flowerpot
competitions were announced and the vintage cars arrived in the Village in great style.
PSRCS‘s stall attracted many passers-by drawn by an interesting display of old postcards of the
Village. The collection was kindly provided by Ann Brockson (Vice Chair, PSRCS) and attracted
great curiosity and discussions with residents and visitors alike who shared their personal memories
of bygone days. New members joined the Society. Some are Village residents whilst others,
visitors with a keen interest in the Village. Welcome to one and all!
Wirral Farmer’s Market
Saturday 10th September 9am-2pm is the date set for the next Farmer’s Market. You can find a
range of locally produced goods at the Village Hall, Grove Street, New Ferry telephone number:
0151 643 1393
“Support your local Farmer’s Market
Support sustainable living.”
What’s on in Port Sunlight?
Have you a club or society in which you are involved and would wish to promote in the next issue
of The Fountain? (Maybe even start up a new interest group). If so, please drop off your
submissions for the attention of the PSRCS via the Social Club or via email psrcs@ hotmail.co.uk
and we will be happy to do so.
Have You Ever Noticed...?
In the last issue of The Fountain we asked if you had ever noticed where in the Village the King’s
crown stands side by side with the Queen’s crown. For those who have not as yet been able to
identify the site it is on the Post Box which stands outside the former Post Office on Greendale
So in this issue we set the question and pose the challenge for you to find a sphinx. Keep a look
out until the answer is revealed in the next issue.
Until Next Time….
Thank you for taking the time to read this issue of The Fountain. In order for our continuing
effectiveness in representing Port Sunlight residents we continue to need your help. Our
membership is on the increase but if you are not as yet a member of PSRCS you will find an
application form attached below. Completed forms can be handed in at the Social Club or how
about just popping in to one of our monthly meetings? Even if you don’t have the time to take on
a larger role, by simply joining us at our monthly meetings you can keep in touch with events in
your local community and you will of course have the opportunity to raise any matter which may
be of concern to you.
PSRCS AGM 2005
The PSRCS EGM will be held on Tuesday 11.10.05 at the Social Club, Bridge Street at 7.30pm.
Official notification will be distributed separately in due course.
PSRCS membership rates and details
Adult Residents £3.00
Juniors (Under 18 years of age) £1.00
Associates (non-residents) £2.00
Subscriptions are due annually.
Make cheques payable to: Port Sunlight Residents and Conservation Society
Return to: Steve Thomas, Treasurer, PSRCS c/o Port Sunlight Social Club, Bridge Street, Port Sunlight
Published by Port Sunlight Residents and Conservation Society c/o Port Sunlight Social Club, Bridge Street, Port
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