Everton to start work on Victorian hydraulic tower

Derelict Grade II-listed Victorian hydraulic tower and engine room to be restored as part of Everton’s new stadium development. Tony McDonough reports

Derelict Victorian hydraulic tower at Bramley Moore Dock in Liverpool Waters


Everton stadium contractor Laing O’Rourke is to start work restoring the Victorian hydraulic tower and engine room at Bramley-Moore Dock.

Built in 1883, they were an integral part of daily life during the dock’s heyday. But in recent years they have fallen into “serious disrepair”. Now they will be restored and will be part of the fan plaza and may become a heritage centre and cafe.

Until now, work has mainly concentrated on salvaging or replacing much of the existing brickwork and repairing mortar and pointing, in order to stabilise the buildings.

In some areas, new bricks were even meticulously sourced from salvage yards, to ensure similar or identical colour matching. As the drive continues to make the buildings watertight, a number of projects will begin soon to accelerate the process.

A new timber roof structure with zinc covering will be constructed with a bespoke finial atop the tower, sealing it from the salt-water environment of the adjacent River Mersey.

Everton said: “This has required significant work with our heritage consultants and Liverpool City Council, to ensure the design is closely aligned to the original structure with minimum intervention, while meeting modern design standards.”

A concrete slab and protective zinc covering will be installed on the tower’s chimney to seal it from future water ingress.

And a new green-roof with waterproofing membrane and insulation will be installed to the engine room, which will have precast architectural copings to contain it.


Everton stadium
Hydraulic tower at Bromley-Moore Dock is currently covered in scaffolding


Internally, the space will be grit-blasted to allow a new protective coating to be applied to the steelwork, preventing future corrosion in preparation for a complete re-fit.

In the coming months, the restored exterior will be visible for the first time as the scaffolding is stripped from the building.

READ MORE: ‘Beer pythons’ set to arrive at Everton stadium

Consultations took place early in the stadium project with heritage consultants and Liverpool City Council. Extensive surveys were undertaken to understand the deteriorating condition of the long-standing buildings.

Architects are currently developing designs to establish exactly how the finished space is best used. Early in the project it was reported it would house a heritage centre and cafe. However, It was not originally intended to accommodate large groups of people.

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