AN ICONIC piece of rural history near Whitchurch has been preserved thanks to the efforts of the local parish council.

Two classic fingerposts near to Combermere Abbey have been brought back to their former glory, with the project being overseen by the deputy chairman of Dodcutt cum Wilkesley Parish Council, Clive Pownell

The two fingerposts were in a heavily dilapidated state, with one of the posts missing one of the actual fingers.

"In the middle of the Cheshire Parish sat two dilapidated cast iron fingerposts," said Clive. "These fingerposts would have been an important part of guiding travellers for over 100 years until the post war deterioration has left them in a state of poor repair.

"The Wilkesley fingerpost with only one of its fingers remaining and most of its black and white livery scheme lost to rust.

"Signpost Restoration, a specialist in the restoration of traditional fingerposts, were contracted by the parish council to carry out the refurbishment.

"After painstakingly piecing back together the broken and cracked components, 29 separate welds were required, with the new castings the project was complete in May 2019. The post has been transformed back to it’s original splendour!

"The post was manufactured by the local foundry of WH Smith & Co in Whitchurch, probably in the early 1900’s, and carries the company name in the casting at the foot of the post.

"Although, in the age of digital mapping, such traditional wayside signage is no longer an important aid to travelling, the aesthetic value of these historic structures is deemed important to the maintenance of rural distinctiveness and this was the view of the parish council to instigate a restoration programme."