* Update: Demolition started in 2015 soon after this story was published. Slowly, the framework and structure of the supposedly repro building emerged from the rubble. In 2016 the borough mayor resigned
THE STRUGGLE to save the Georgian terrace of shops in Dalston has ended.
Soon after the last of many court actions by local campaigners failed, demolition resumed with new vigour.
Murphy, the building firm to which the terrace’s owner, Hackney council, last year gave stewardship of the buildings, is now legally able to demolish the rear and give the facades the postmodern makeover favoured by the council.
Open Dalston founder Bill Parry-Davies, who has fought tirelessly for more than a decade to save the buildings, on the group’s blog described the court refusal to allow a last-minute protest as “a sad day for Dalston”.
In return Murphy will be able to collect rent on offices and flats in the terrace.
Once it has completed the first phase of its its disneyfication, the same treatment will will be meted out to the rest of the buildings in the terrace, which date back to the early 1800s.
Council mismanagement of the terrace had cost local people millions and had lost the opportunity to provide flats at affordable rather than extortionate rents.
Parry-Davies added: “Our future generations are about to lose heritage assets, in which they could have taken pride once restored. The loss will be irreversible.”
Hackney council had not kept its promise that the houses would be restored.
David Altheer 200115
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