Archive | Houses RSS for this section

Norwood Green Mill, Halifax

Mill building to be demolished in small Calderdale hill village:


Screen Shot 2017-01-04 at 15.53.27.png

Very important piece of heritage for this small village on top of the moors to the East of Halifax.

From an urban design perspective, the building is vital to the village centre, providing a strong building line on the edge of the village green feature.

From a conservation point of view, village mills like this are fascinating, because they are often the sole example of heavy industry in the settlement, providing an economic base for the rest of the village to thrive.

The buildings are all robust and are in use, and could achieve a fantastic market value. Sadly, for some unknown reason, the market is signalling for more semi detached dull stock fit for new families in the countryside.

There is an irony in despoiling the beauty and history of villages, on which elevated market desirability for these semis is predicated.

Screen Shot 2017-01-04 at 16.04.51.png



Westfields, Knowle Park, Mirfield

Loss of another beautiful mansion house as councils continue to jetison their property:


A great description of the building and the politics surrounding the sale and destruction of this piece of history can be found here:

Article in the Examiner can be found here

It infuriates me that the council claim ‘because it isn’t listed we can not stop the demolition of the buildng’ – well you could, firstly by not selling your historic building stock to volume house builders, and secondly by invoking an article 4 ruling. You really can keep ths building alive should you choose to.

You just want the money though. This generation will be looked upon as reckless iconoclasts one day

Weaver’s Cottage near Holmfirth

Application to demolish a beautiful farm house/weavers cottage:

new mill cottage.JPG

Just……Why?…its perfect.

The moorland to the South of Huddersfield is stunning, punctuated with small hamlets. Typically, this old building comes from an era prior to the great industrialisation of the area, and can be seen from miles around. The buildings are integral to the landscape. What a strange thing to want to destroy.




Gothic building in Otley to be knocked down

Permission for the demolition of a beautiful cottage ‘Church View’ in Otley has been applied for:

Church view.JPG

A splendid blackened building that adds so much to the route along the road here, as the gothic vernacular emerges amidst the hedgerows. The demolition and replacement of this cottage will seriously detriment the aesthetic quality of the local cluster of buildings, and would set a dangerous precedent for future replacement dwellings in rural estates.

You can sense the reluctance of Indigo Planning to support this proposal in their Heritage Statement. They acknowledge the unique importance of this building, but have found a tenuous argument along the lines of ‘the building s not listed’, and ‘a previous application to extend the property did not warrant concern  over conservation’.

Incidentally, should anyone from a planning consultancy be reading this, I want to make it very clear – your profession is not in town planning but quite the opposite; the manipulation of planning law to serve speculators at the expense of society.



Former high street in Huddersfield

Plans to demolish the last remnants of the Victorian High Street in Mold Green, Huddersfield:

Mold green high street

Wakefield road in mold green

So many times I have driven past this row of buildings, concerned by the portent of boarded up windows and council issued safety signs. There was a time when this part of Huddersfield was Victorian, and the streets were defined by the buildings that fronted them. Then slowly they were demolished to be replaced by car park walls, shrubbed verges, and budget supermarkets. In no time at all the place became formless. This row is the last vestige of traditional urban culture on the road, and its presence helps us to remember how this area once thrived with pedestrians, before it became an arterial road. Sadly the buildings are council owned, and so planning permission is but a formality. Should anyone from Kirklees read this, please reconsider – the housing crisis, the environmental crisis, and the need for identity in northern towns, belies all reasons for demolition. Think on.

Manor House Nursing And Residential Home, Lightcliffe

Demolition of a nursing home to make way for 14 dwellings in Lightcliffe West Yorkshire:

Manour residential home

Difficult to date this building, but it certainly has historic qualities that would be sad to lose. Architecture aside, surely it must be the wrong direction to be losing care home stock as our population ages? Why not some enabling development in the grounds to keep the place going?

Mediocre urban design rears its ugly head once again:

manur development

Has the architect even visited the site? Why waste time and money doing something like that?

Edwardian house in Dewsbury

An attractive town house in Dewsbury with marvellous high chimneys is to be demolished to make way for an extension to a religious building.

Dewsbury mosque extension

This is an interesting case, as the loss of the building in question would be to allow for the extension of a religious building. I respect that the council needs to offer provisions for the building of places of worship – West Yorkshire’s Muslim community has become part of the quintessential character of the region. As such I suppose this location is as good as the next, but it remains that this is the loss of an attractive old building the likes of which can no longer be built.

I would challenge the developer to see if such an old building could be modified into a mosque, or perhaps even look to some of our redundant industrial buildings or the methodist churches and schools that we are in the process of losing. That would be an interesting integration of cultures, and be a unique addition to the industrial landscape of the region.