Liverpool has been stripped of its World Heritage status after an international panel found developments including the new Everton football club stadium threatened the city's waterfront.

The decision was made by the United Nations Education Scientific and Cultural Organization Heritage Committee, which is currently in session in Fuzhou, China.

The committee, made up of representatives of 21 countries, said the developments had resulted in a "serious deterioration" of the historic site.

Liverpool has been on UNESCO's coveted list of world heritage sites since 2004, alongside the Taj Mahal of India and the Great Wall of China.

The other delisted sites were the Arabian Oryx Sanctuary of Oman in 2007 and the Dresden Elbe valley in Germany in 2009.

Announcing the decision Wednesday, committee chairperson Tian Xuejun said 20 votes had been cast.

In a statement, UNESCO said Liverpool had been "deleted" from the list because of "the irreversible loss of attributes conveying the outstanding universal value of the property," CNN reported.

UNESCO called the Liverpool Waters development - a decadeslong planned rehabilitation of the city's famous docks - "detrimental to the site's authenticity and integrity."

The decision was met with dismay by city leaders of Liverpool.

Joanne Anderson, the city mayor, said she was "hugely disappointed" and that the council would consider filing an appeal.

Labour's Kim Johnson, MP for Liverpool Riverside, said while she is disappointed, "as a city we are resilient and we'll always fight back."

Steve Rotheram, the metro mayor of the Liverpool city region, told the BBC the decision was "a retrograde step that does not reflect the reality of what is happening on the ground."

Richard Kemp, Liverpool's Liberal Democrat leader, said it was a "day of shame" for the city. "It would, without a doubt, affect our tourism and inward investment," he said.

The Liverpool City Council said 700 million pounds had been invested in upgrading historic assets in the past few years.

An additional 800 million pounds has been allocated for developments in the next five years, the council said.