News From Norton Folgate, London

By the gentle author

British Land’s original proposed demolition of Norton Folgate

British Land’s original proposed demolition of Norton Folgate

British Land’s revised proposed demolition of Norton Folgate

British Land’s revised proposed demolition of Norton Folgate

Can you spot the difference between the two pictures above? One is the level of demolition proposed in British Land’s previous scheme for Norton Folgate and one is their recently revised version.

Back in March, I reported on British Land’s proposal to demolish the dignified old warehouses in Blossom St, preserving only piers of bricks on the facade and recycling an unspecified amount of the fabric in their new building, an approach which Historic England dignified with the phrase ‘sensitive restoration.’

When Spitalfields Trust challenged this destruction of the warehouses, British Land claimed they were preserving them – which makes it paradoxical that now British Land have announced they are‘retaining’ the warehouses as a concession to those who objected to their scheme. Yet a closer examination of British Land’s revised proposal reveals they intend taking the warehouses apart and rebuilding them.

Boris Johnson, Mayor of London has ‘called in’ the British Land Norton Folgate scheme which was rejected unanimously by Tower Hamlets Strategic Development Committee in July. On 18th January, the Mayor will stage a public hearing at City Hall at which he will determine the decision upon the application himself. This will be the thirteenth such ‘call in’ and the previous twelve have all been determined in favour of the developer.

Meanwhile, the Spitalfields Trust have launched a Judicial Review into the legitimacy of the ‘call in’ and billionaire Troels Poulson has offered to buy the site so that the Trust may implement their alternative scheme by Burrell Foley Fisher, which is based upon the principal of minimal architectural intervention, utilising Norton Folgate to serve the needs of local people by providing genuinely affordable workspaces and housing.

British Land’s amended proposal for Norton Folgate is still an overblown development that will destroy an historic neighbourhood to replace it with a hideous corporate plaza. We need you to help us stop this, by writing letters of objection to point out that it remains unacceptable. You will find a simple guide to how to object below.

You can read Alec Forshaw’s full assessment of British Land’s revised scheme on Save Norton Folgate facebook page

Norton Folgate as it is today

Norton Folgate as it is today

Massing of the British Land development

Massing of the British Land development

The Spitalfields Trust scheme by John Burrell of Burrell Foley Fisher

The Spitalfields Trust scheme by John Burrell of Burrell Foley Fisher

Spitalfields Trust scheme looking from Norton Folgate – drawn  by Lucinda Rogers

Spitalfields Trust scheme looking from Norton Folgate – drawn by Lucinda Rogers

Spitalfields Trust Scheme, looking along Fleur de Lis St – drawn by Lucinda Rogers

Spitalfields Trust Scheme, looking along Fleur de Lis St – drawn by Lucinda Rogers

Spitalfields Trust Scheme, looking down Elder St from Commercial St – drawn by Lucinda Rogers

Spitalfields Trust Scheme, looking down Elder St from Commercial St – drawn by Lucinda Rogers

Words the gentle author / Spitalfieldslife

 

 


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