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Last Updated: Wednesday, 15 June, 2005, 08:13 GMT 09:13 UK
'Move road to save church' plea
St Mary Redcliffe church, Bristol
Parts of the church date back to the 12th Century
A report into the future of one of Bristol's oldest churches is calling for a busy road nearby to be diverted to preserve the church.

St Mary Redcliffe, in the city's harbourside area, has been drawing visitors since medieval times.

But there are fears pollution from cars on Redcliffe Way in front of it is damaging the fabric of the church.

Now experts are asking for the road to be narrowed and moved away from the north steps to save the historic site.

The Conservation Plan, commissioned by St Mary Redcliffe Vestry, the church's Parochial Council and The Friends of St Mary's Society, said the changes will help protect the building.

A Bristol City Council spokeswoman said: "The church's conservation plans contain some interesting ideas which we will need to study carefully.

"Obviously the cost of moving the road and some of the other proposals would be significant and not everyone would feel this would be a priority.

"We would also need to consider the impact such a major change would have on the traffic network, local businesses and residents."

St Mary Redcliffe is one of the largest parish churches in England - some parts of the building date back to the 12th Century.

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