Preserving history at Northgate Steps

30 September 2020

The rebuilding of Chester’s historic Northgate Steps, which began in September 2019 is now complete and Cheshire West and Chester Council has released a video showcasing the complex project.

The video can be viewed on the Council’s YouTube channel.

A set of solid, vertical steps were revealed when the scaffold came down, bringing this famous section of the City Walls back to its former glory and preserving it for future generations for many years to come.

Final touches will see handrails installed and a mysterious-looking polymer panel has been put in place on the landing—this is only a temporary measure while plans to display archaeology from the site via a viewing chamber are in progress.

Although work at Northgate Steps is complete, a section of wall immediately west of the site also needs to be investigated in phase two of the repairs, so this section of the famous City Walls will not be fully open to public until later this year. 

Councillor Karen Shore, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport said: “This has been a complex and challenging project but our iconic structure has now been repaired and rebuilt, and looks wonderful.  Exciting plans are currently being developed to display some of the fascinating archaeology revealed during the works.

“All work on our precious City Walls presents some challenges but this required the careful recording of archaeological finds, ongoing liaison with Historic England, extensive propping to maintain safety and the difficulties involved in carrying out a heavy civil engineering work in a very tight site, close to residential properties.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to say a most sincere thank you to residents, businesses and visitors for their patience and support while this historically significant project has been in progress.”  

For more information about current work on the City Walls, including the section that collapsed in January 2019, see the Council’s website.

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