A HISTORIC Merseyside park will be returned to its past glories after £5.5m restoration plans were approved.
The long-awaited overhaul of Southport’s King’s Gardens, based on the original 1911 design of the Promenade park, could start by the end of the year.
Lottery chiefs this week awarded more than £4m to the project, paving the way for the scheme to be formally rubber-stamped by Sefton council next week.
Council leader Peter Dowd said: "This is great news for Southport and marks the culmination of five years’ hard work to ensure a robust and impressive bid was in place.
"Of course this comes at a time of very limited resources for the council but I am delighted that we can support a scheme that benefits from ring-fenced, external funding.
"King's Gardens occupy an important position in a seafront area which has witnessed major investment in recent years.
"Thankfully we can now press ahead with another refurbishment scheme and are looking forward to working with the Southport community to ensure the revamped gardens are enjoyed by as many people as possible."
The scheme, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Big Lottery Fund ‘Parks for People’ programme, is believed to be the largest current park restoration project in the region.