Campaigners who fought to save a historic mill have told of their upset after an iconic feature of the building was damaged.
It had been hoped that the inscription stone and date stone on the front of Wesley Street Mill in Bamber Bridge would be saved and used as feature when houses are built on the site.
But despite attempts to save the stones they have been destroyed in the demolition process. The inscription stone read ‘Bamber Bridge SP & WG CO’ and was above the 1907 date stone.
Charlotte Cropper who was part of the Save Wesley Street Mill campaign said: “It is a shame, it would have made a fantastic feature but accidents happen. I don’t believe it was deliberate. I have become quite pally with the demolition team. I don’t think it was done on purpose.”
However Derek Rogerson who has also been involved in he campaign to save the mill said he felt ‘dismayed’ that the stones hadn’t been saved.
He said he thinks the site owners and the council should commission funding replicas.
He added: “It’s not quite the same, I realise, but at least it would go someway to atone for their apparent disregard in preserving some of our local history and heritage.” Work to demolish Wesley Street Mill has been underway since June, after plans to build houses were approved.
South Ribble Council’s planning committee gave the go-ahead for plans to build up to 200 homes on the site, much to the dismay of campaigners who have been fighting to save the historic building.
Prior to the approval of the plans for the houses, the council completed a deal to buy the former Mackenzie Arms site off Station Road, to open up the way for development.
When the work started, demolition bosses said it was expected to take a number of weeks due to the size of the building.
The mill, which is more than 100 years old, has been derelict for almost 15 years, having closed as a mill in 1959.