Frustration built up

No, Mr Clayton (Oct 13), I really do not believe that Sheffielders are apathetic about the standard and appearance of most of the new developments taking place in our city centre.

Monday, 15th October 2007, 9:39 am
Updated Thursday, 18th October 2007, 8:20 am

I believe that most people, when they have energy left from the stresses of daily living, feel utterly helpless.

Two things have remained fairly constant in this city during my lifetime, so far:

1 The same party remain in power most of the time and

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2 This group, for all their intermittent noises, do not take a blind bit of notice of the populace they puport to look after.

Oh yes, they go through 'consultation processes' frequently but I have yet to meet anyone, apart from the obvious ones, who believe decisions have not already been made. Most recently over Wisewood and Myers Grove schools, and homeowners given information too late to purchase their leasehold at a reasonable rate. I could go on...

Email the council? It's a waste of effort. Is there no one with power we can appeal to?

For anyone in doubt about the beautiful buildings we still have, may I suggest lifting your eyes above shop fronts.

The photograph in The Star of Cross Burgess Street is an excellent example.

Why name new shops anything anyway? Whatever the development, they will still be Sheffield city centre - anything else will be divisive.

Also I really support the small shopkeepers. They are the ones who make the real difference between the city and Meadowhall. I shop at both and would hate them both to offer the same shops and experiences.

As soon as we are told that a new developement will be of a high architectural specification, I get the shivvers. This term has come to mean more characterless steel, concrete and glass.

Sorry that this is such a diatribe. Passionless? Apathetic? No. Just a terrible, overwhelming feeling of helplessness or is it hopelessness?

Mrs Elliott, Manchester Road, Sheffield 10

Sevenstone weakling

THE new name of the New Retail Quarter, Sevenstone, is bizarre. Charles Atlas must be turning in his grave to think that someone has stolen his catchphrase for such a monstrous development.

For any readers under the age of 40, his speciality was physique development and not property development. None of us want to be a 'seven-stone weakling' as his famous adverts used to say, but if we accept both this name and this scheme, then we shall be proved so to be.

My alternative name is Gallstone, ie something which would be unasked for, unwelcome and unwanted.

Howard Greaves, vice chairman, Hallamshire Historic Buildings Society

Past goes to ruin

COUN Hesketh's response to my letter not surprisingly missed the point and was predictably patronising to the Sheffielders who care about the preservation of out city's historic buildings.

To reiterate, Hesketh had previously stated that the owners of the Ship Inn, Shalesmoor, should be 'put in stocks and pelted with tomatoes' for attaching a small retractable awning to the side of their building. I responded by saying that by using his benchmark of punishment for such an act, then surely he has condemned himself and his fellow councillors to the gallows for permitting the decimation of the many noteworthy buildings they are supposed to protect. Although I must say in Hesketh's defence that The Star decided to omit my mentioning of the gallows, even though it was a hypothetical comment.

As for his condescending remarks about how he and his cohorts having our best interests at heart when it comes to the conservation of Sheffield's architectural heritage, I simply feel insulted. The public can see through those at the town hall who make the decisions to demolish the city's past, regardless of their attempts to justify such actions. Yes, certain prominent properties have been restored, but so they should. That's what most people want.

One should judge politicians on what they do, not what they say they are going to do. So let's see what happens.

Peter Charles, Hillsborough

It's called progress

THE Bethel Chapel is a tacky Victorian recreation of a medieval castle; it's hideous and serves no purpose in a modern city centre. What people seem to forget is that other old buildings made way for the chapel as the city's needs changed. It's progress.

Now this building must make way too.

Old buildings should be protected when they are useful, valuable or of architectural merit, the chapel I'm afraid is none of these. We heard the exact same guff from the very same people with Leopold Square, which is now lovely.

Move on. Not everyone wants to live in the city you grew up in.

James Wright, Burrowlee Road, Hillsborough