Secret Scotland

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Mindless hysteria – not always the correct response to a demolition notice

I used to work in West Regent AND was part of forum/group that enjoyed abusing Glasgow City Council.

Both of those assertions have been false for many years. Not only don’t I work there any more, the company is long gone (as is the one that replaced it), and I’m no longer associated with that group. The latter is quite sad as we parted acrimoniously after a misunderstanding when the ‘leader’ decided to misinterpret an offer I made to volunteer some free help as some sort of takeover attempt. However, shortly after that they got really nasty toward the council, and councillors, so I’d have gone anyway. A real shame as they were (and still are) very knowledgeable on local history. I follow that side of their activity, but not the rest, and won’t identify them.

I spotted a news item about an old (1830) B listed building in West Regent Street being granted permission for demolition, having decayed internally and externally through neglect. I was slightly surprised at first, as I thought this one had gone many years ago. But, it seems this one is number 141, while the one I was thinking of was at 107.

From memory (I couldn’t find anything online) 107 West Regent Street was probably the ‘Last Straw’ that compounded the problems I was having with the group, and made me ‘walk.

This was a derelict building, similar to 141, which was vandalised and burnt down at some point and, following an inspection, had the remains declared unsafe, with demolition following.

My recollection was that ‘The Group’ launched into one of its council/councillor hate orgies, attacking some by name, on the basis that they were behind the fire, to release the site for development, and that they were to profit as they were somehow connected to builders/developers, and should be fired immediately for their part in destroying a historically significant building, which was said to have been one of (Charles Rennie) Mackintosh’s commissions.

I can’t find easy confirmation of that online, as the old historic record for 107 has been purged, so don’t know if it was true.

But that was when I gave up on the group, realising that they seemed to claim EVERY building fire was attributable to the council, or a councillor or councillors wanting a site cleared of a historic building that could not otherwise be demolished to suit their plans.

I was fed this story about 141.

CITY planners have agreed that a run-down B-listed building in central Glasgow can be demolished and replaced with a development of serviced apartments.

Officials have approved an application made by Suite Street Hotels for premises at 141 West Regent Street, on the corner with West Campbell Street.

APARTHOTEL Can Replace City Centre Listed Building

It’s interesting to look at the listing for this building.

Description

Circa 1830. 2-storeys and basement, 5 x 5 main bays, with 2

3-bay extensions to S; 1st 2 bays from N on West Campbell

Street blind; 2nd bay from W on West Regent Street blind at

1st floor. End terrace classical block converted to offices.

Painted ashlar. Basement band. Pilastered central doorpiece

with flat block pediment to entry at head of steps

oversailing basement. Sash and case windows in architraves;

corniced at ground floor. Eaves cornice; blocking course

raised in centre. Details continue on West Campbell Street

elevation; 1 small arched window in pedimented gable,

(pediment truncated).

141, 143 WEST REGENT STREET, 120-124 (EVEN NOS) WEST CAMPBELL STREET

There doesn’t appear to be anything of particular significance there, or even a famous name attached to it.

Also, it was converted to offices, so most, of not all, of the interior was lost or damaged years ago.

I mention this because if you go online and look for more on this demolition, you will find a story which begins (from early 2018).

Historic and important building facing demolition in flats plans

I’m not linking to it, as I used to use the media source as a linked reference for many of my posts, then discovered they kept altering their links, so that all the reference link I had carefully included – all lead to dead or non-existent web pages! So sod them.

However, I read and reread that story they ran, and apart from the planning application requesting demolition, NOWHERE did the article concerned give ANY reason or detail to back up the headline claim where it had proclaimed ‘Historic and important building’.

I’ve said it before, I’ll no doubt say it again – we can’t keep EVERY old building. And, despite many people wearing rose-tinted glasses when looking at them, many were also badly built, and won’t last. Cowboy builders are NOT a modern invention.

But we DO have to be CAREFUL, and make sure we keep the good ones which we can.

Now that I’m ‘older and wiser’, rather than listen to, and accept without question, the statements of the critics, I find it much more interesting and informative to actually look at some planning application decisions, and the logic behind them (which can now be found freely online as part of public records). It seems that our council is NOT the villain some often seem to try to portray it as.

141 West Regent Street

141 West Regent Street

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Dec 8, 2018 - Posted by | Civilian, council | , ,

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