According to the Liverpool Daily Post

Developer Langtree will move on to the site today, the first time work has taken place on the derelict site in 13 years.

The £3.7m restoration begins almost 26 years after the International Garden Festival first opened to huge public acclaim in 1984.

After accessing the 70 acres of land construction starts within seven days to restore the Oriental gardens, returning them to public use.

Also revamped will be the lakes and waterways, the Moon Wall will be rebuilt, two pagodas restored and the landscaping of woodland trails carried out.

A new pedestrian access will create links with Otterspool Promenade together with a new parking and public transport facilities.

It is the first work on the Garden Festival site since 1986 when 600 homes were built on the land after the hugely popular park closed.

Pleasure Island amusement park opened for a short time before closing in 1997 leaving behind a forgotten waterfront oasis.

Today, city leaders described the breakthrough as a “milestone” in a chequered history for the park which has controversially descended into neglect.

John Downes, Langtree managing director, said it was a symbolic move for the Garden Festival’s future.

And he agreed the restoration would hopefully accelerate a 1,300 apartment project which collapsed in 2008.

Mr Downes said: “We are pleased to reach a final consensus so we can move forward. It’s a tricky site, but unique in nature.

“I’d like to think this is a symbolic moment towards sustainable long-term use. The initiation of the gardens should be a springboard.

“The proposition was to start both elements (gardens and apartments) in tandem, but the market is what the market is.

“We have planning consent to build the apartments, but are still waiting for the market to pick up.”

Langtree have promised no traffic disruption for motorists commuting to and from south Liverpool along Riverside Drive.

The restoration works will begin with the clearance of undergrowth which has left many original pathways unpassable.

Pedestrian routes will be widened and reappointed to ensure they meet modern standards.

Leader of Liverpool City Council Cllr Warren Bradley said: “This is a milestone in a key site for the city and many people have been looking forward to the restoration of these gardens.

“This is an area which should be a real asset to the city and one we should be proud of, so we are delighted this work is starting.”

Steven Broomhead, Chief Executive of the NWDA, said: “I am delighted our £3.7m investment will help to bring this site back to life, creating a visitor attraction of international significance that will further boost the city-region’s growing visitor economy, as well as providing a important leisure resource that will enhance quality of life for local residents.”

“Today’s milestone is the culmination of strong partnership working between the Agency, Langtree, the Land Restoration Trust and Liverpool City Council to bring this restoration to fruition and secure the long-term future of this important site for many generations to come.”

Land Restoration Trust chief executive Euan Hall said: “The most important thing about the restoration is that this time we will be able to ensure that the park can be managed for the benefit of the local community not just now but for many future generations.”