Lime Street is reopening

Lime Street is to reopen overnight (Friday into Saturday) following the completion of work to make safe the derelict former Futurist Cinema.

An independent structural engineer appointed by the city council and SAVE Britain’s Heritage under the orders of a Court of Appeal judge – has now signed off the work which has been carried out on the façade of the building.

This has included the installation of props to support the second floor parapet and placing straps on part of the structure. Work had already been carried out removing the pediment and making safe the parapets.

Councillor Malcolm Kennedy, Cabinet member for regeneration, said: “I am frustrated that this work has taken so long, disrupting motorists, commuters and businesses.

“However we have been in the hands of the independent structural engineer and have been guided by the advice they have given, together with their availability to check the work and make sure the structure is safe.

“Once again, we would like to thank people for their ongoing patience while the work has been completed.”

The work that has been carried out is estimated to make the front of the building – which has been empty for the last 30 years – safe for at least the next four months.

A £35 million plan to regenerate Lime Street and replace the existing run-down buildings, creating up to 340 jobs, was given planning permission last year but has been held up by SAVE Britain’s Heritage.

SAVE lost a High Court case in which they argued the city council should have consulted DCMS and UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee over the scheme, but are appealing the decision, with the hearing scheduled to take place later this month.