The fight to Save Island House is far from over!

Scaffolding around Island House by Jonathan Clarke

Scaffolding around Island House by Jonathan Clarke

I was very sad not to be in Birmingham today and support the campaign to Save Island House. Architect and Urban Designer Joe Holyoak went to the Birmingham City Council Planning Committee this morning and has written a good report of what went on:

Planning Committee this morning gave consent to the application (2011/08448/PA) by Armac Demolition for approval for the method of demolition of Island House. It was given reluctantly, in the knowledge that it had no alternative. Several councillors spoke strongly against the proposed demolition, and there were no voices in disagreement.

There is one remaining basis on which demolition might be stopped. When outline approval (C/07395/06/OUT) was given to the City Park Gate masterplan, of which Island House formed part, in 2006, the owner Quintain entered into a Section 111 legal agreement in which among other things Quintain undertook to retain and refurbish Island House. This agreement is still in force.

Quintain have now made a Deed of Variation, in which they are asking BCC to delete this part of the agreement. It is open for consultation until 6th February, and then has to come to Planning Committee for determination. It appears that if Planning Committee are minded not to change the agreement, then demolition cannot legally take place. So it is vital that as many people as possible write to the planning officer Joanne McCallion, objecting to the Deed of Variation. [You can register your objection online.]

Quintain’s actions were described by Councillor John Clancy in Planning Committee as “reprehensible”. If Quintain are as insensitive and ruthless as they appear to be, the worst possible outcome is that they demolish the building anyway, and have their lawyers argue after the event about the costs and penalties for breaking the agreement. Even before Planning Committee, scaffolding was being erected around Island House. [See above photo]

Joe Holyoak

It’s pretty clear what we all need to do to try and save this historic gem – register your objection to Quintain’s Deed of Variation before 6th February!

Here are some links to posts elsewhere concerning today’s proceedings (I’ll add more as they crop up):

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About Nicky Getgood

Living and loving Digbeth.
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2 Responses to The fight to Save Island House is far from over!

  1. Nicola Toms says:

    And we all need to be on #islandhousewatch

  2. Barnard says:

    Follow and join in the ongoing discussion on Island House on the Re~Stirred Forum
    See http://tinyurl.com/7c8ttdz

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