The latest position  on the National Trus’ts reopening of properties and Gardens is updated regularly at this link:

Following a first sod cutting ceremony construction has now begun on the Chester Northgate scheme.

Due to the Covid-19 situation, there has been slippage on the proposed project timescales.

The following  milestones are currently expected to take place, subject to any further Covid-19 impact:

  • Princess St. reopens for access onto St Martin’s Way from Northgate St. – Early July
  • Site secured and Hunters Walk closed off – Early July
  • Hoardings on Northgate Street installed in front of former library building – Early July
  • Drain enabling works commence on St Martin’s Way – Mid July
  • St. Martin’s Way/Nicholas St. closed to southbound traffic for drain works – Mid September
  • Hunter St. realignment complete and opens onto St Martin’s Way – Late October/early November
  • Princess St. closed to access from Northgate St. – Late October/early November.


Updated Project FAQs



The Future of Dee HouseDee House and Amphitheatre Working Group findings and recommendations report published.

Dee House The Future – Findings and Recommendations FINAL

The next major enabling works to take place during the spring will be the creation of Hunter Street’s access onto St. Martin’s Way – the inner ring road.

This is currently expected to start from 18th May 2020, subject to any Covid-19 restrictions or impacts, including the stability of supply chains and the health of contractors’ staff.   It is expected that this part of the project will take around 4 months during which time all parking along Hunter Street will be suspended and lanes will be reduced, although access will be maintained to the properties.  HGV access will be required to deliver construction materials (such as drainage pipes, manhole rings and sub base – stone). There will also be deep excavations for new drainage, heavy machinery for the placing of new gullies, kerbs and interim tarmac installation. Construction working is only permitted from 08:00 – 18:00 Monday to Friday and until 13:00 on Saturdays.

Once the roadworks are completed, we expect to re-open Hunter Street to traffic in August and this will become the route onto St. Martin’s Way from Northgate Street and Princess Street will close. During the main construction period, all site traffic and deliveries will have access into Hunter Street from St. Martin’s Way and deliveries will be permitted during weekdays only from 07:00 – 18:00. During the works, temporary traffic lights will control 2-way construction-only traffic along Hunter Street. This route, from St. Martin’s Way turning into Hunter Street, will also then become the principal access route for all traffic using the new Northgate multi-storey car park only. However, for the rest of Hunter Street, traffic will remain one-way westbound, as now, with access from Northgate Street. Hunter Street will be fully tarmacked with new road markings and traffic calming by Storyhouse once all Northgate Phase 1 building work is completed and the site opened, currently expected in early 2022.

The Northgate Team appreciate this will cause residents and business in the vicinity considerable disruption and inconvenience, but they are working to minimise this as far as practicable and by monitoring noise and dust levels throughout the Northgate construction period. Further updates can be found via Twitter @CH_Northgate and the project website  Please direct any questions us via email to:

Chester Civic Trust is the leading local voluntary organisation influencing the quality of Chester’s built environment. We are based in Bishop Lloyd’s Palace on Watergate Row, a Grade 1 listed building and the city’s finest example of a medieval timber building. The Trust’s membership is around 380 individual members plus 12 corporate members.

Bishop Lloyd's Palace

At the Trust’s Executive Meeting held on the 10th March, members enthusiastically  welcomed the proposal contained in the Draft Integrated Risk Management Plan to reinstate the second whole time fire engine at the new Fire Station in Newtown.


Chester has over 650 listed buildings and the Trust had been concerned for some time that a single appliance is inadequate for the protection of the the historic core of the city. The timber framed buildings and the world famous Rows are particularly vulnerable. A further justification for the reinstatement of the second engine in Chester is the growth of residential use of the upper floors in the city centre and the volume of high density accommodation like the student housing developments over recent years.

Chester Civic Trust strongly endorses the recommendation to reinstate a second whole time fire engine at the Fire Station in Newtown.

From:  Linda Parr

Major Developments Project Officer

Cheshire West and Chester Council

In view of the government’s announcements regarding Coronavirus, we have taken the decision to cancel our drop-in Northgate Project information event on 25 March at Chester Town Hall.

Please see the attached newsletter which covers the latest news on the project and the highways works while we build the new drainage tunnel for the city centre.

We will hold another information event once safe to do so, in the meantime we will post updates on our website and via the media.

Northgate Newsletter March 2020 vfinal 3

Thank you for your interest in the Northgate project.



Chester Civic Trust announce winners of 2020 ‘Good, Bad and Ugly’ awards

The Chester Civic Trust which celebrates its Diamond Jubilee this year, has given its verdict on the best examples of new development, renovation of existing buildings and community projects in its annual Good, Bad and Ugly awards for the City.  Now in its 14th year, the awards highlight Chester’s buildings, places, spaces and projects in an alternative ‘New Year Honours list’.Nick Clarke, chairman of the judging panel and Partner at law firm Aaron and Partners, said: “These annual awards are based on nominations from our members. They aim to recognise the best changes to the Chester scene in the past year. We hope they will encourage higher standards of design and maintenance in our public realm.”  Read More:

Winners of 2020 ‘Good, Bad and Ugly’ awards

A monograph produced by Cyril Morris (one of our Vice Presidents in advance of the ‘Four Towns’ conference held in Chichester last October.
50th Anniversary Historic Towns Studies V4

PLEASE NOTE This lecture is cancelled due to  Coronavirus restrictions. We hope to reschedule foe later in the year.

FRANCIS PRYOR, One of Britain’s most distinguished living archaeologists and a former President of the Council for British Archaeology, Francis has spent 40 years studying the prehistory of the Fens. He was the lead excavator of the Bronze Age village at Flag Fen. A prolific author, Francis has written many highly acclaimed books including the’Birth of Modern Britain’ and the recent, ‘The Fens’, that was serialised as a BBC Radio 4 ‘Book of the Week’

Lectures are held on Wednesday evenings at 1930 in the Grosvenor Museum lecture Theatre.

Lectures are free to members of Chester Civic Trust and guests are welcome: £5 on the door.