THE historic Brierfield signal box has been removed as part of work by Network Rail to rebuild the level crossing in the area.

The 140-year-old signal box was originally set to be demolished as part of the plans for a new automated crossing.

But it was saved after arts organisation In-Situ asked to work with Network Rail to salvage it.

Work started last week on dismantling and demolishing the current level crossing in Railway Street, which means the road is closed to motorists until Sunday.

Network Rail are up-grading the crossing and it will be replaced with new equipment, which requires some of the road to be dug up, with work taking place overnight from 10.30pm to 8.45am. Parts of Railway Road and Clitheroe Road are also being resurfaced while Network Rail carry out the work.

Rail chiefs initially wanted to demolish the signal box, as it is no longer required with the new technology being used.

In their application, a Net-work Rail spokesman said: “The crossing proposal includes the implementation of new technology that requires pre-determined det-ection zones and clear lines of site.

“The crossing is now classified as automatic, not requiring an onsite attendant for day-to-day oper-ations. This has lead to the gate box becoming obsolete.”

But campaigners were keep to the signal box in some form, and a deal was struck that will see In-Situ attempt to reconstruct the signal box on land near to Brierfield Mill.

Network Rail have said that they will reclaim as much reusable fabric from the building as possible.

The signal box was built in 1876 and went through a review with English Heritage in 2012 to assess its merits for listing, but it was not recommended due to alter-ations to the building over the years and its setting.