THE HISTORY OF
A GRADE 2 LISTED BUILDING
Sandfield Tower is a 3 level Grade II listed building in the south of Liverpool, set back from the main road and lost in time compared to the neighbouring houses. Now derelict and fire damaged throughout most of the building, it is left to the mercy of the weather and elements from many of the open windows and part missing roof.
The original name for this building was called Sandfield - The Tower due to its location and the fact that there is a beautiful sandstone tower rising through the centre of the building but has more recently been known as 'Gwalia'. A last ditch effort is in place to highlight the plight of this listed building, its poor state and the unusual history surrounding the building, now lying empty save for the mercy of time.
Sandfield Tower was built in 1851, and by 1857 it was owned by Joseph Edwards, a South American merchant for use as a private Villa. It was then owned from 1880-1881 by Miss Alice Houghton. William Kinsman owned it from the years 1882-1890 and then Ralph Lyon Broadbent owned the property from 1891-1900.
When the building was then sold, it was converted in to the First Church of Christ the Scientist.
The building is located on the main outer ring road in Liverpool, West Derby on Queens Drive. Set back from the road and in its own plot of land, it once commanded the view of Sandfield Park well before the built up area that surrounded it. Please note this building is private property and on private land.
This sect then secured permission to erect the building on the corner of the site, now a private day-care centre/nursery. Sandfield Tower subsequently fell vacant after the Church moved into this new building, and it was then sold on to its present owner.
Both English Heritage and Liverpool City Council are aware of the the current state of the building and naturally, people from Liverpool will have seen the 'Stop the Rot' campaign which has been featured in the Liverpool Echo on many occasions. In 2001, the City Council employed a Buildings at Risk Officer to tackle the problem of delapidated listed buildings. Properties have been identified and prioritised for action. Money has been provided by the City Council and Northwest Development Agency to enable the Buildings at Risk Officer to use the statutory powers available.
As a priority building, Sandfield Tower has been subject to such measures. We can only hope that this building is saved and returned to its former glory, standing at the entrance to Sandfield Park. Today, Sandfield Tower stands there unloved. Passed by many who don't give it a second glance. Without a roof in parts, without its protective cover. A burnt out shell waiting to be restored - waiting for a second life. Gone are the silent white Rolls Royce cars driving up the path to let people in to their private sect, gone are the lit fireplaces and gone is the respect of the mansion, now derelict, fire damaged and vandalised.
VIEWING THE SIDE AND REAR OF THE PROPERTY
VIEWING THE FRONT OF THE PROPERTY
Sandfield Tower sits on the busy Queens Drive Ring Road in West Derby, Liverpool and the area has undergone many changes. From the demolition of grand houses, the loss of the spire on St James' Church, to the building up of houses along Queens Drive and surrounding roads.
Mentioned in the Domesday Book, West Derby achieved significance far earlier than Liverpool itself. The name West Derby comes from an Old Norse word meaning "place of the wild beasts" and named an administrative area called the West Derby hundred, or West Derbyshire, which covered south west Lancashire.
Viewing any old map, one only has to look at a map of forgotten names in Sandfield Park - Runnymede, Bradstones, Bishop's Court, Belle Field, Broomhills, Higherfield etc.
This site is dedicated to keeping Sandfield Tower's name off the demolished list.