WARRINGTON Borough Council says that a historic plaque is being kept in storage after concerns were raised that it had been stolen.

The memorial devoted to John Howard was removed from the Howard Building on Bridge Street ahead of its conversion into the frontage for the new Warrington Market.

Fears have been raised on social media that the plaque is missing or even stolen, as it has not yet been reinstated to its former home – which is also known to many as the former Boots building.

Warrington Guardian:

But the council says it is currently being stored at the Town Hall, and that it still plans for a refitting.

A WBC spokesman said: “The John Howard plaque is currently being stored at the Town Hall.

“We intend to reinstall the plaque on the wall of the market when all of the peripheral snagging matters have been completed.”

John Howard was a noted 18th century prison reformer who lodged at a silversmith shop on the site in the 1770s while completing work on jails in England and Wales.

The plaque was unveiled in 1907 to mark the 130th anniversary of the publication of his work.

Warrington Guardian:

Meanwhile, the Warrington bombing memorial plaque will remain in its location near to the River of Life for the foreseeable future after it was also moved due to the construction work.

It is understood that the family of Tim Parry, who died aged 12 alongside three-year-old Johnathan Ball after the IRA attack on Bridge Street in 1993, are supportive of this decision.

Warrington Guardian: Plaque in memory of Warrington bombing victims