The Fairy Tale of Burscough Bridge
The Fairy-tale of Burscough Bridge is a scheme developed by Liverpool based design agencies BCA Landscape, Smiling Wolf and Woodscape back in 2008 with the brief to ‘enrich the sense of identity’ of our local village.
The scheme enabled the redesign of a selection of pedestrian areas and the creation of new small interlinked squares. These areas were animated with a range of bespoke furniture, paving, artworks, lighting, signage and a village clock. The village clock now stands proud as the centre point of the village. Its design consists of photographs of local people etched within the tower of the clock.
The title of the project came from an idea relating to The Brothers Grimm style of story. As Burscough is steeped in history ranging from the tale of the nine-toed boatmen, window peepers and Grumman Hellcats, the designers latched on to these ideas when developing the project. It is said that passers through Burscough include Noel Coward and Ivor Novello, as well as The Third Earl of Lathom and the Fourth Baron of Skelmersdale.
The project is dispersed along the main high street, as the architecture acts as ‘a series of episodes’ or a ‘journey’ from Wharf Square to Church Square and the illuminated church itself.
Burscough once had a number of processions through the village such as the ‘Rushbearing Fair’ and the ‘Tea Party Procession’. Residents would also take part in the ‘Pace Eggers’ which saw locals dressing up as ‘Beelzebub’ and other guises. There would be singing and dancing and the squeeze box would be played in a custom that had been performed at Easter for hundreds of years. Another element of the project was the redesign of the village’s crest. Out went the lions, and in came the boat horses – much more appropriate to the history of Burscough with its canal links.
Many questioned the involvement of the ‘fairy’ in the tale of Burscough, but a little known fact about Burscough is that the ‘Fairey Fireflies’ squadron (no.1771) flew over HMS Ringtail in the Second World War.
Here’s a link to a video that was produced alongside the project. Enjoy!