Aughton – It’s big green slab-sided pedestrian bridge

Well you can’t miss it – it’s big, green and very long:-

My previous posting of a few days ago refers:-

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2019/08/22/aughton-doctors-bridge-footbridge-being-replaced/

My first thought having seen it in place was that when walking across it you will not be able to see anything as the walls are so high. This must be a Network Rail specification but of course the good people of Croston (see link below) recently protested about another Network Rail slab-sided bridge which they feel is poor architecture:-

www.lancs.live/news/lancashire-news/croston-residents-campaign-changes-meadow-16131748

But as mentioned in my original posting this bridge seems to have been replaced by Lancashire County Council not Network Rail, although I guess it will be to NR’s specifications.

Well it will serve a purpose but the days to aesthetically pleasing railway architecture seem to be a thing of the past sadly. I wonder why NR specify things to be simply functional rather than pleasing on the eye too?

Whilst marveling at the engineering of this Dutch GRP-type bridge I can’t help but be disappointed with how it looks. Yes I know, the old pedestrian bridge was of no architectural merit either but at least you could see around you when crossing it.

Click on the photos to enlarge them

Aughton – St. Mary’s RC Church – If not for the noticeboard onto Prescot Rd you may not realise that it’s a church

I posted a while back about what I understood to be the old St. Mary’s RC Primary School in Melling on the site of what subsequently became ‘The Chesterfield’ banqueting suite on Prescot Road and where a new house is presently being built. Here’s a link to that previous posting:-

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2017/11/24/melling-remember-the-chesterfield/

When I realised the connection with the RC church just up the road into Aughton (the school was in Melling) I wondered about this church that hardly looks like am ecclesiastical building. Without the crosses on the apexes of the main building and porch, some small religious statues amongst the trees and the notice board outside you could easily pass it by not realising it was a church at all and I wondered why this was the case.

An internet search seemed to provide the answer i.e. ‘Chapel and attached presbytery of the low-key type that prevailed between the passing of the Second Relief Act of 1791 and the Catholic Emancipation Act of 1829.’ The interesting link below, from which this text is taken, gives more details:-

taking-stock.org.uk/Home/Dioceses/Archdiocese-of-Liverpool/Aughton-St-Mary

Despite being an atheist church/ecclesiastical buildings have always fascinated me as they often represent the very best in architecture at the time of their construction. St Mary’s turns this view somewhat on its head though as it is quite deliberately understated.

As with my other local history blogs about subjects in Sefton and West Lancs, any additions, corrections and comments are much appreciated.