Formed from a group of interested residents, mostly from the Woolston and Paddington areas, wanting to reverse the years of neglect on Paddington Meadows Warrington’ only riverside meadow and the historic New Cut Canal, the new Cut Heritage and Ecology Group adopted a formal constitution at a meeting held at Woolston Hub in November and elected counsellor Ian Johnston as Chairman.
The group have worked extensively with Warrington Borough council officials, park rangers, and community groups to shift many bin bags of rubbish from the canal bed whilst council officials have secured funding from external bodies to improve pedestrian access to the meadows.
Currently in discussion with the Environment Agency over the impact of flood defences to heritage artefacts in the area, the group are already having a powerful influence in protecting the area from developments not conducive to preserving its history.
Impact on Warrington’s “worst place” for heritage
Declared by the Royal Society of Arts in their survey on heritage as within the bottom 5 of a survey of 325 towns Warrington’s performance was under estimated because privately owned canals were not taken into account however the group in looking at the neglected state of the New Cut were concerned that any detailed investigation would negate the presence of the canal in the next survey.
Ian Johnson (Chairman) said “Since we began to highlight the neglected state of the area and work with council officials, there has been considerable progress both maintaining and improving the appearance and the access to facilities and there is a lot more we can do. The New Cut canal, “the M62 of the C18th” is probably the last substantial remaining section of the Mersey and Irwell’s navigation with so much heritage in place and waiting to be uncovered and the town is beginning to realise that this heritage has to be protected”
For more information
www.newcuttrail.com (under construction)
Ian Johnson Chairman, Lynda Eagan Vice Chairperson
Les Green 07828 545924