In November 2022, Wavertree was visited by the government's High Streets Task Force. This is "an alliance of place making experts" aiming to provide guidance, tools and skills to communities and local authorities, with the objective of helping local people and organisations "transform their high streets".

We understand that Liverpool City Council - supported by the Liverpool City Region combined authority - has identified Wavertree as a priority area for such transformation. Along with 'Love Wavertree', the Wavertree Society was represented at a workshop session held at Wavertree Library on 10th November.  The role of the HSTF was explained, and our High Street's strengths and weaknesses were discussed. We supplied the Task Force with copies of the 'Wavertree Way' report (produced by local residents Richard MacDonald and Craig Forward in 2021 - see the sample images on this page, or download a copy here
) and also the 'Wavertree Street Audit' (produced by Living Streets in 2005 but never acted upon by the City Council - download here).  Both of these documents put forward specific proposals for making the High Street more pedestrian-friendly and more business-friendly - with priority being given to people visiting and using the street rather than merely passing through.

The HSTF submitted its report to the City Council before Christmas, but its contents have not as yet been disclosed. They will be the subject of a further meeting - to which we have been invited - in February. Meanwhile it was announced, in mid-December, that the government has allocated £13.63 million to Liverpool for highways maintenance work on the Key Route Network. The City Council has decided to spend £4 million of this on improvements to Wavertree High Street and Picton Road (between the Clock Tower and Spofforth Road).

We have yet to discover the extent to which the HSTF recommendations have been influenced by the 'Wavertree Way' proposals - or the extent to which the government funding will be used to implement these recommendations rather than being spent on conventional 'highway improvement' measures. We are also waiting to find out what community consultation will be undertaken. The government funding is subject to various conditions, one of which is that the work must be completed by the end of March 2024, so there is no time to waste. All will be revealed, we hope, by the time our next Newsletter appears.

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Page created 25 Jan 2023 by MRC, last updated 26 Jan 2023