Albert Dock, Liverpool

Liverpool loses World Heritage status

Liverpool has been stripped of its UNESCO World Heritage status due to the ‘irreversible loss of attributes conveying the outstanding universal value of the property’ at the city’s Waterfront.

The Liverpool Maritime Mercantile City
 was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2004 and on the List of World Heritage in Danger in 2012 following concerns about the proposed development of Liverpool Waters.

Since then, the area has gone ahead along with other developments both inside the site and in its buffer zone, with the World Heritage Committee considering that these constructions are detrimental to the site’s authenticity and integrity.

In February, Liverpool City Council approved plans for Everton Football Club to build a new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock in Liverpool Waters and this was given the go-ahead in March after the government decided not to intervene.

Commenting, Mayor of Liverpool, Joanne Anderson said:


“I’m hugely disappointed and concerned by this decision to delete Liverpool’s World Heritage status, which comes a decade after UNESCO last visited the city to see it with their own eyes.

“Our World Heritage site has never been in better condition having benefitted from hundreds of millions of pounds of investment across dozens of listed buildings and the public realm.

“We will be working with government, Historic England and other stakeholders to examine our next steps. We have a stunning waterfront and incredible built heritage that is the envy of other cities.

“Our commitment to maintaining and improving our buildings remains as strong as ever and will continue to be a key part of our drive to attract visitors, along with leisure, retail and events.

“I find it incomprehensible that UNESCO would rather Bramley-Moore Dock remain a derelict wasteland, rather than making a positive contribution to the city’s future and that of its residents.

“I’ll now be seeking to draw together all the UK heritage bodies in a round table to plan a positive future with further investment.”

Liverpool’s historic centre and docklands were inscribed for bearing witness to the development of one of the world’s major trading centres in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The site also illustrated pioneering developments in modern dock technology, transport systems and port management.

Liverpool is only the third property to lose its World Heritage status, with the Elbe Valley in Germany and the Arabian Oryx Sanctuary in Oman previously losing theirs.

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