Veteran (aren’t most of us?) heritage campaigner Howard Greaves, Hallamshire Historic Buildings Society, likens plans for Heart of the City 2 as tantamount to turning that particular part of the city centre into a veritable Milton Keynes..
His comparison elsewhere with the restored Ypres Cloth Hall may be a little extravagant but Howard with his knowledge of the situation outlined in the sadly out-of-print history of the first 25 Years of the HHBS – an object lesson to councillors and planners – has grounds for concern.
I recently took an 81 route bus journey and was saddened to notice the banal brutalist Rings of Brodegar structure (without the originality and antiquity) being erected at the new banking HQ down the Moor.
Now we supposed poor relations of Leeds have several misconceptions about how they order their affairs but I cannot envisage such a structure being part of a regenerated Leeds.
Leeds might even see the merits of the classically inspired Crimean War Memorial as opposed to the opprobrium and disdain lavished upon it by council officers in Sheffield.
Howard’s concerns have substance as I discovered further on my journey with how the bottom of Ecclesall Road is overshadowed and dominated by glass and concrete and the residue of Wards Brewery reduced accordingly.
As for the conservation officers of the council proposals to bring back into residential use some dozens of buildings, well that is to be supported.
The most urgent is what’s left of Loxley Church and its burial ground, though the past and present owners have not been named and shamed sufficiently such has been the feebleness of local and national agencies.
Could do better, Sheffield Council.