SRQ: No repeat of slash and burn

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The publicity material for the Sheffield Retail Quarter says that it will protect historic building facades, including those along Pinstone Street, and the old Sunday School on Cambridge Street.

A senior councillor has assured me that the council recognises the value of the buildings and will seek to use them rather than demolish them.

The council’s change of heart and willingness to commit to this in print is very welcome, but we must still hold them to account.

Their record respecting the city’s modest stock of historic buildings is not good, and despite the protection of the council’s own conservation policies, Hammerson had little trouble bullying them into agreeing to wholesale demolition.

Anyone who wants to see new and old coming together to make the Sheffield Retail Quarter a success should visit and make sure that the council knows that delighted though we are to see progress, there must be no repeat of a council partner bulldozing their way through the planning process so that they can do the same to the city’s character and heritage.

The people of Sheffield are the customer, the council is our representative, and we set the rules, not the developer.

J Robin Hughes

Towngate Road, Worrall, Sheffield, S35 0AR