Hackney contractor bumbles in an East End park

© J.E.D. Milner/The London Naturalist

LonNatEVIDENCE has emerged of how the builder-developer charged with rebuilding the facade of the Georgian Dalston Lane terrace buildings approaches conservation.

A Murphy team was photographed, above, in an East London wildlife meadow to cut trees for a separately owned adjacent railway line.

The photographer, J.E.D. Milner, says in a report for The London Naturalist, right, that the lorry was driven over the Clinton Road meadow in Mile End Road E3 4QY, without park management having been consulted.

When he spoke to the workers, he says, they claimed to be unaware of trampling vegetation and flattening anthills. They ceased, then asked which Tower Hamlets council office they should approach.

Milner comments: “The incident is typical of the lack of concern for the environment by many commercial entities who are inadequately supervised when subcontracted to public bodies and large corporate concerns.”

Pollution-damaged finials at @ Dalston Lane Tce London E8 140114 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Pollution damage: finials in Dalston Lane

Murphy’s responsibility in Dalston Lane, to demolish then reproduce the delicately detailed facades at Nos 48-76, obviously involves a different kind of conservation. But news such as the above will not reassure campaigners wanting to save the buildings.

Their owners, Hackney council, specifically the planning sub-committee, approved the demolish-and-rebuild proposal, 2014/0323, on 5 March 2014.

That is not, however, the end of the matter. Save Dalston Lane founder Lisa Shell and a host of other campaigners yesterday 10 March 2014 asked the Local Government Secretar to “call in” the scheme. Approval by Eric Pickles would stop the scheme immediately. Hackney will probably anyway delay the start of work, as is common practice as soon as a call-in request is made.

With the help of Open Dalston, Shell is also preparing to request a judicial review. Supporters are being asked to underwrite the cost of hiring barristers, likely to run into five figures.

David Altheer 110314

* Backstory: Hackney outdoes Blitz bombers; Stop destroying Hackney heritage and Vandalism, says Iain Sinclair

* Readers should know that the editor is a member of the campaign coalition.

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.

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