Pub; usual story:
A fundamental port on the Westgate Wobble pub crawl, the Old Pack Horse has been closed for a few years now, and although a robust and attractive building, the developer sees no value in this and wants to get 5 houses on here.
Sadly much of the building is only 1 story, however, the 2 story portion of the building could certainly be integrated into a development.
And just like that, you’ve managed to capture a piece of history in perpetuity.
Interestingly, the New Pack Horse pub is just over the road. There is definitely something very Yorkshire about this perfunctory pub naming. Without both pubs present, the irony is lost. And irony theft is criminal around these parts.
Application to demolish The Queens Pub in Leeds:
I can’t think of another area of a city more comprehensively cleared and redeveloped in the post-war golden age of planning than Hunslet in Leeds. There is absolutely nothing left of the town that the Victorians built here. Aside from this pub.
I have no idea how it has survived up until now, but it has. This will be the final nail in the coffin for Hunslet’s sense of place. All for a van rental shop.
Of all the West Yorkshire local authorities Leeds has the best record of dissuading pub owners from selling out to developers. Lets hope conservation of this fragment of history is fought for by council officers. There must be some small print in the Aire Valley Area Action Plan that precludes this action, surely?
The last aspect of the Alexandra Works campus in Keighley:
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.
You 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, yet with 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 highlighted that there has been nothing short of a cull. We need to recognise that these buildings are temples from an erstwhile era, and that somehow Brtain of modernity emerged from this mythical antiquity that now seems distant and unrecognisable. Every culture needs its mythos.
Application to demolish public house in Shipley:
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.
Very interesting building cluster in Batley to be knocked down:
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.
Application to demolish a wing of Holme House, and the development of 8 dwellings:
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.
Hare and Hounds in Ilkley:
“Delius Lived Next Door” in Bradford:
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.