Halton has welcomed His Royal Highness The Duke of Gloucester to the borough to mark three major milestones around Runcorn Station.

Today, Monday April 1 is the 150th Anniversary of Runcorn Station, there are plans to re-open the Halton Curve rail link in May, and Halton Council’s Runcorn Station Quarter regeneration project is now underway.

His Royal Highness, accompanied by Cheshire Lord Lieutenant, David Briggs MBE, was greeted at The Brindley Theatre by Halton’s Mayor and Mayoress, Cllrs John and Marjorie Bradshaw, the High Sheriff of Cheshire, Mrs Alexis Redmond MBE, Council Leader Cllr Rob Polhill, and Chief Executive David Parr.

Alex Cowan, Archivist of Runcorn Historical Society, invited His Royal Highness to view a display on the history of Runcorn Station and meet guests associated with the station.

This was followed by presentations from Mick Noone, Head of MerseyTravel, on the impending first passenger services on the new Halton Curve, which links Liverpool with Chester, and David Parr on the Council’s ambitious regeneration plans for Runcorn Station Quarter.

After unveiling a plaque to mark the station’s anniversary, His Royal Highness visited the site of the Runcorn Station Quarter works to cut the first sod along with the civic party and representatives from contractor Balfour Beatty.

Balfour Beatty is responsible for the demolition of an existing redundant section of elevated highway, the construction of a new roundabout and improvement of the associated highways infrastructure in Halton and Widnes.

It is these road improvements that will improve the connectivity between Runcorn Station and Runcorn Town Centre and will enable exciting opportunities for future developments which could include; new leisure facilities, housing and space for businesses.

To coincide with HRH The Duke of Gloucester’s visit, the Council has released more images and a short video showing how the area could look in the future. https://youtu.be/xw2DyuTeotk

Halton Borough Council Leader, Cllr Rob Polhill, says: “We are thrilled that His Royal Highness came to Halton to mark these major milestones and cut the first sod for the Runcorn Station Quarter project.

 “The Council is committed to the regeneration of  Runcorn, and the opening of the Mersey Gateway gave us this opportunity to transform the area around the station. Runcorn Station is an important asset for Halton, and the Halton Curve will further increase passenger numbers into the area, so it is vital the station’s setting is improved.”

Paul Weaver, Managing Director of Balfour Beatty’s North & Midland regional business West Delivery Unit, said: “It was an honour to welcome His Royal Highness the Duke of Gloucester to Runcorn today, to break ground and celebrate the redevelopment of the Station Quarter.

“The redevelopment will significantly contribute towards Halton Council’s ambitious wider regeneration plans, developing a more efficient highways network to benefit the local community and the travelling public for years to come.”