Preston Bus Station campaign wins top heritage heroes award

Winner: John Wilson is filmed at Preston Bus Station
Winner: John Wilson is filmed at Preston Bus Station
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The campaign to save Preston’s bus station from demolition has scooped a national award.

In the fifth year of the Heritage Alliance Heroes Awards, the campaign was named joint winner with a project to rescue the derelict Howsham Mill, near York.

The group’s chairman Loyd Grossman presented the award to John Wilson from the Save Preston Bus Station campaign, during The Alliance’s Annual Heritage Day at the Glaziers Hall in Central London today.

Loyd Grossman said: “It is fantastic to award this year’s heritage heroes award to both Howsham Mill and Preston Bus Station who represent the power and passion of volunteers throughout the heritage sector. The Save Preston Bus Station Campaign demonstrates the hard work and tenacity of volunteers in saving a formerly unloved and unprotected example of Brutalist architecture. While the volunteers were often diffuse and expressed within a range of social networks, their coming together of interests represents a public re-evaluation and democratisation of the building’s value.”

Campaigner John Wilson said: “To be recognised nationally by The Heritage Alliance and winning this award is a tremendous achievement for everyone connected with our campaign to save Preston Bus Station. It has been a long hard campaign, at times it looked like we had lost the battle when the second listing application failed. Several members faded away, but we took on the challenge to fight Preston City Council head on.”

“After English Heritage sent in their own team to assess the building we knew we had a chance to turn this result around, with Angela Brady in London, there was only going to be one winner. On this special date, September 23 2013, the bus station was awarded Grade II listed status. We were bursting with pride: it was like scoring the winning goal in added on time and winning the FA Cup.”