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Save the Bus Station campaigners win national heritage award

Posted on - 4th December, 2014 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Preston Bus Station, Preston City Centre, Preston News
The Bus Station's future looks secured, as investment is due

The Bus Station’s future looks secured, as investment is due to be pumped into the building Pic: Tony Worrall

Campaigners who battle to stop Preston Bus Station being demolished are to be honoured at a ceremony in London.

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John Wilson and the Save the Bus Station campaign have won the Heritage Heroes Award.

The Heritage Alliance has decided to recognise the work of the Bus Station campaign who worked to get the building listed at the third attempt.

Preston City Council had voted to demolish the building, which is now a grade II listed building and in the hands of Lancashire County Council.

The building divides Prestonians with many seeing it as a urine-reeking unfit for purpose blot in the city centre while others feel it is an architectural gem to make Preston unique.

John Wilson, pictured at the front, has led the campaign to save the building

John Wilson, pictured at the front, has led the campaign to save the building Pic: Bernie Blackburn

Mr Wilson travels to London for the Annual Heritage Day to receive the award from The Heritage Alliance chairman Loyd Grossman.

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 Andrew and I 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 23rd September 2013 PBS 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.”

Also accepting the award will be president of the Royal Institute of British Architects Angela Brady who has worked with the Bus Station campaign volunteers.

Loyd Grossman said: “The Save Preston Bus Station Campaign demonstrates the hard work and tenacity of volunteers in saving a formerly unloved and unprotect 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.”

The Bus Station is due for renovation work with the county council unveiling a £23 million plan, which includes locating a Youth Zone in the building and only using the Eastern half of the building as a Bus Station.

What do you think about the heritage award? Did you support the campaign to save the Bus Station? Let us know in the comments below

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