Alexandra Works in East Keighley

The last aspect of the Alexandra Works campus in Keighley:

https://planning.bradford.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=map&keyVal=P9YAWXDHFIH00

The last remaining building of the former Alexandra Works complex in Keighley will soon be demolished following the clearance of the rest of the site a few years ago.

Alexandra Mill Keighley.JPGYou can view the original mill buildings in the area by browsing Google maps street view and setting the view to the archived images. A lot of quirky Victorian architecture has been lost here. It is lamentable, but sadly in the fringes of a town such as Keighley the property market is limited and uses for sites such as this come solely in the tin shed industrial space format.

Perhaps if Keighley had capitalised on its Victorian culture in the way Saltaire, Hebden Bridge, or  Skipton have, the demand for residential or start-up space in former industrial buildings would exist. Keighley should try to attempt to emulate the relationship Ilkley has with Bradford, and reposition itself as a small town that offers escape from the bigger city, but more amenity than the villages.

Planners must realise it is their responsibility to create housing markets in this way and foster regeneration through reviving history and culture.

There has been some press recently about the loss of mills in northern England, and it has been nothing short of a cull. We are not recognising that these buildings are our  temples from an erstwhile time that we no longer recognise, but realise that somehow this country emerged from this mythical old world.

 

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Cottage in Thornhill Lees, Dewsbury

Plans to demolish a residential dwelling and erect 4 new dwellings:

https://www.kirklees.gov.uk/beta/planning-applications/search-for-planning-applications/detail.aspx?id=2018/91866

Ouzelwell hill.JPG

 

Suxh an elegant cottage in the heart of the of the Heavy Woollen District. When school children draw a house, this is what they think of.

So why knock it down? To cram 4 dwellings into the garden of course! No amenity space, and three cars parked on roads and hanging over driveways.

Make the right decision Kirklees, please.

 

Odd Fellows Hall, Shipley

Application to demolish public house in Shipley:

https://planning.bradford.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=PB3E4RDHGAS00

Oddfellows Hall Shipley.jpg

A formidable white cube of a building from 1840, as the name suggests, there is a lot of social history tied up in this institution.

The Odd Fellows reflected those individuals outside of guilded institutions, yet wished to fraternise with like minded folk. Rather like the Masons, the Odd Fellows order built a network of meeting halls like this. In Yorkshire they are another reflection of Victorian will for civic participation and social capital.

Now, it reflects the death of pub culture, and I am saddened to include this building on this list, having such an intriguing and benevolent provenance.

Commercial Hotel, Batley

Very interesting  building cluster in Batley to be knocked down:

https://www.kirklees.gov.uk/beta/planning-applications/search-for-planning-applications/detail.aspx?id=2018/91475

commercial hotel batley 3.JPG

I am always interested in Victorian buildings that turn corners. We don’t seem to do that anymore. A tight radius, and a front wall abutting the pavement would be at odds with junctions visual splays these days. This is why we love heritage – much of the built form of yore would not be acceptable any more, and that makes it invaluable.

Its another pub lost forever, and a particularly unique one at that, being a composite of a number of small buildings.

It looks in good condition and there is no extensive car car to develop so I’m not sure why the owner wants to pull it down. So as always another public building is removed from a small struggling town, leaving the surrounding urban area a suburban space, with amenities a short car journey away.

I would love to have a pint in this pub. And it looks like I never will.

commercial hotel batley 1.JPG

 

Holme House Care Home, Gomersal

Application to demolish a wing of Holme House, and the development of 8 dwellings:

https://www.kirklees.gov.uk/beta/planning-applications/search-for-planning-applications/detail.aspx?id=2018/91490

holme house.JPG

 

A very handsome building that is robust and has offers enough utility to avoid unnecessary demolition. Sadly the M62 corridor housing market being as bullish as it is, eight 3-4 bed houses presumably offers a slightly higher return on investment. And even if that is not the case, some off the shelf housing types positioned here are much easier for an agent to market, and easier for an accountant to model into a business projection.

Heritage, as a positive economic externality has still yet to be somehow captured in our planning/economic system. I think it is time to explore the sustainability discourse; why not lets start making policies that allow demolitions such as this to be refused on the grounds of destroying the embodied energy they contain. Redeveloping this site would result in infinitely higher carbon emissions that the repurposing of the building for a similar use.

2 pubs in Bradford

Hare and Hounds in Ilkley:

https://planning.bradford.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?keyVal=P74LUIDHLOW00&activeTab=summary

Hare and hounds Ilkley.JPG

“Delius Lived Next Door” in Bradford:

https://planning.bradford.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?keyVal=P6Z7DDDHLKW00&activeTab=summary

Delius lived next door.JPG

Two more pubs to be demolished (or as good as in the latter’s case) in Bradford. Of particular concern is the former ‘Delius Lived Next Door” (clue is in the name) which forms part of the conservation area within the University campus quarter of the city.

The conservation officer has laudably denounced the proposal as facadism, so it will be interesting to see how much weight the planning officer gives to his consultation.

The Hare and Hounds is not a building of such merit, but is on the cusp of being of  historical vintage, with an early 20th century aesthetic embodied in the Bankside-Powerstation-esque chimneys, and ornate brickwork within the interstices of the timber frame. Something about the architecture of this era embodies the interwar calm of England. Post 1939, everything became a bit more fraught.

And it is certainly concerning if Fayre and Square cant keep their pubs open.

 

 

Masonic Lodge, Bradford

Outline plans quickly approved by Bradofrd for the demolition of a former Masonic Lodge in a conservation area:

https://planning.bradford.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?keyVal=P53YI3DHKK400&activeTab=summary

manningham masonic lodge.jpg

Outline permission has been granted for the demolition and the redevelopment of this site for 12 houses. The usual planning balance predicated on a perceived housing crisis was applied, and as such concerns over impacts to Apsley Crescent conservation area were nullified.

Certainly a unique elevation, with buttresses obscuring what would otherwise be the primary elevation of the hall, the building reflects the enigma or the ancient order that once occupied the lodge.