Liverpool looks to Beatlemania for latest regen plans

A regeneration masterplan that will amplify Liverpool’s rich musical heritage has been approved.

On Friday (March 6) Liverpool City Council’s cabinet approved a Spatial Regeneration Framework (SRF) for the Cavern Quarter, including Mathew Street – home of the world-famous music venues the Cavern Club and Eric’s, and nearby Williamson Square.

The SRF contains a range of recommendations to help attract new investment, celebrate the current music scene and to enable the council to steer the future use of existing buildings in the area.

The document aims to address a tourism report that called for the city to curate a clearer proposition around Liverpool’s pivotal role in the story of popular and contemporary music.

A UNESCO City of Music, Liverpool’s music heritage industry – which is centred around The Beatles – is now worth more than £90m a year, but the tourism report found visitors are increasingly looking for a quality experiential visit.

The Cavern Quarter/Williamson Square SRF was the subject of a five-week public consultation and following today’s approval it will be used to guide all future planning applications within the area.

The SRF, which will be uploaded to the council’s website on Monday, will eventually become a Supplementary Planning Document when Liverpool’s Local Plan is formally adopted in autumn 2020.

Joe Anderson, Mayor of Liverpool, who has also created a Beatles Legacy group, said: ‘Liverpool’s musical heritage is an asset of global significance. This masterplan presents an opportunity to provide an experience which celebrates that unique offer and showcases the current scene. The next key step is to identify the monies needed and work with our partners to deliver these changes.’

Peter Hooton, chair of The Beatles Legacy Group, said: ‘This progressive and “visionary” master plan is welcome news. The Cavern Quarter, Whitechapel and Williamson Square are home to numerous historical sites that have shaped the City’s music, and cultural heritage.

‘We need to protect and develop these sites in order to enhance these world-famous attractions and to ensure Liverpool celebrates the past but also enables the creative industries to thrive in the future.’

Thomas Barrett

Journalist - follow him on Twitter

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