Wrexham’s old fire station on Bradley Road is up for sale, and we had the chance to look inside before the site is used for new purposes.
Gareth Lay from agents Bruton Knowles say they are expecting offers in the region of £400,000 to £500,000 for the larger than you would think site in the town centre – which has been described as an ‘exceedingly quirky redevelopment opportunity up for grabs’.
Gareth added: “The sale of such an iconic landmark in the town presents an exciting redevelopment opportunity for anyone looking to acquire such a well located re-development opportunity.”
“Built in the 1950’s, this fire station originally housed three fire engines and included a technical rescue unit, an aerial ladder platform used for carrying out rescues from heights and an environmental protection unit. Owning a wonderful history, we are sure that this building will fire the imagination of all that come to view it.”
The agents talk of the “original design and a host of original features” of the building, however the building could face demolition with the site being cleared ahead of a fresh development. The building itself is a warren of rooms that have seen better days, but the gem is the main hall with the well known frontage on to Bradley Road. To the front of the station are the modern red doors, but to the rear are solid oak older doors currently sealed up to prevent unauthorised access.
We got in touch with the team from the ever excellent Wrexham-History.com to let them know there was a chance to look around the vacant building, and managed to liberate a skip-bound map from 1944. We believe it could be from an earlier fire station on Chester St, as the Bradley Road site is marked with a pencil X plus possible hydrant circles written in. New roads and estates are hand drawn on to the map, along with type written road names with along currently unknown numbers.
The building has been cleared out with most items of worth or interest stripped out, however there are the odd object that points to its very recent history. There are colour coded trays for each of the watches that were in operation:
In the same room is a wonderful button with the power that many would like to have, to change the nearby traffic lights to enable prompt exit on to the town’s roads!
Upstairs there are a couple of sofas, a kettle and a tray of mugs, presumably last used on the day the station was finally closed up for good.
The building is over three floors, with the top containing a larger office. Files had been moved out with labelling scattered around with the various destinations of boxes and furniture.
Sadly we were told the pole had been out of action for many years, and technically it was used to prevent firefighters falling rather than a ‘full slide’. It may have been a tale, but we were told younger men would use the pole but older firemen would opt for the stairs – and not be that far behind their mates.
The new station is an impressive multi-million pound development, but is seen by some as ‘lacking the heart’ of the Bradley Road building.
The impressive tiling around, and the beamed slats over the maintenance pit give a solid feel to the work that took place here, but the names on coat hooks remaining and whiteboards with training details lying around at times it felt it could be back in use within minutes. One sign that made us chuckle was the fire safety warning inside the station advising not to tackle a fire, prompting tales of overcooked food smoking out the kitchen.
The station has been replaced with what has been described by some as a warehouse style development. The modern training facilities are now state of the art, with the tired workshops at Bradley Road already being historic many years ago, but there is a feel that the building is and has been an important part of people’s, and the town’s, history.
As mentioned above, you can can browse the pictures from Wrexham-History.com site by clicking here.
If you are interested in the site itself further details can be obtained from Bruton Knowles at 01743 770 084 or from Gareth directly via email: firstname.lastname@example.org