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Old December 22nd, 2012, 12:46 AM   #701
madferret
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Originally Posted by moveupandon View Post
Shocks me! I'm naive I think! I can't see its impartial at all.

What would stop Mr Pickles expressing his bias and being 'good old pals' that will be prone to agree with whatever the SoC&LG says?
The all-party Select Committee that oversees the work of the department and decisions made by the Secretary of State.

Like tomegranite, I don't see bias in these appointments. You're reading too much into Pickles' decision making. I've said before that you have to separate the office from the person in matters like this.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 01:24 AM   #702
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Originally Posted by moveupandon View Post
Shocks me! I'm naive I think! I can't see its impartial at all.

What would stop Mr Pickles expressing his bias and being 'good old pals' that will be prone to agree with whatever the SoC&LG says?

Read 10/12/12 letter for Pickles clear, 'I don't care' attitude re: costs! and clearly disregarding the evidence.

If this is "Good Practice" (cough, cough), then The Law is An Ass!
You're missing the point. If the SoS feels so strongly about a particular issue that he wants to make a (completely misguided) decision directly and personally, he can.
It's no more improper to delegate the decision to someone else, if anything it's less so.

Last edited by tomegranate; December 22nd, 2012 at 01:39 AM.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 10:31 AM   #703
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Let's Own It Ourselves!

Well done for resurrecting this issue Adam.

I wonder if there may be an opportunity here for a fresh approach with those of us that signed the petition taking the lead rather than cheering on the benevolent dictator, Sir HB.

FC United raised £1.6m from supporters in community shares towards the new stadium. At the time that they raised the money they did not know where the stadium would be and they did not own any land. However, the share issue helped them to secure further money and do the deal with MCC. These are community shares and so the governance is like a co-operative - one member, one vote and the shares are not to be traded on the open market. You can read more here:

http://www.communityshares.org.uk/

I am thinking that a solution for London Road Fire Station could be to establish a Community Development Trust with the intention of acquiring and developing the building for the benefit of the people of Manchester. This means that neither Britannia or Argent will get to build their hotel, but there are other things that the building could be used for and it was once mooted by MCC that it could become a cultural centre.

The Development Trust would seek funding from MCC and Heritage Lottery Fund to develop the building as well as putting public pressure on Britannia to sell it. If 500 or more people bought shares then they would own the Trust and have an equal say in what went on the site. There is more to it than that, but it is a fairly new concept. It might not be enough to persuade Britannia to sell, but it could be. There could also be an (un-connected, of course) campaign to boycott Britannia's other hotels in Manchester and to encourage visitors to do the same that might hurt their profits.

I read recently that in Hastings a Community Development Trust has received a grant of £11.4m from Heritage Lottery Fund to redevelop the historic pier. This is towards a total project cost of £13.8m of which some will be raised through donations and some through community shares - less than £0.5m.

There is such interest in this building and its fate in Manchester that it might be possible to do something like this. The problem up to now has been that this interest has been passive and those people that are concerned about it have felt powerless to do anything. The City Council tried to do what they could, but they failed. Perhaps it is time for another approach and for the people to act.

I think that other investors would come on board too, like the co-op group and gmpvf or rich people like Hucknall and Hook, but the crucial thing is that there is a community of interest that wants to do something and that can bid for funding such as Heritage Lottery and others. As I said earlier it still may not be enough to prise the building from Britannia, but then that is the case with all options now that the CPO has failed.

If you and some other people on here want to have a meeting with the Community Shares Team, I can introduce you. Could this virtual forum become the driver that leads to a physical development project in Manchester? Maybe we should be careful what we wish for!

Cheers G
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 01:22 PM   #704
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Originally Posted by Garibaldi773 View Post
Well done for resurrecting this issue Adam.

I wonder if there may be an opportunity here for a fresh approach with those of us that signed the petition taking the lead rather than cheering on the benevolent dictator, Sir HB.

FC United raised £1.6m from supporters in community shares towards the new stadium. At the time that they raised the money they did not know where the stadium would be and they did not own any land. However, the share issue helped them to secure further money and do the deal with MCC. These are community shares and so the governance is like a co-operative - one member, one vote and the shares are not to be traded on the open market. You can read more here:

http://www.communityshares.org.uk/

I am thinking that a solution for London Road Fire Station could be to establish a Community Development Trust with the intention of acquiring and developing the building for the benefit of the people of Manchester. This means that neither Britannia or Argent will get to build their hotel, but there are other things that the building could be used for and it was once mooted by MCC that it could become a cultural centre.

The Development Trust would seek funding from MCC and Heritage Lottery Fund to develop the building as well as putting public pressure on Britannia to sell it. If 500 or more people bought shares then they would own the Trust and have an equal say in what went on the site. There is more to it than that, but it is a fairly new concept. It might not be enough to persuade Britannia to sell, but it could be. There could also be an (un-connected, of course) campaign to boycott Britannia's other hotels in Manchester and to encourage visitors to do the same that might hurt their profits.

I read recently that in Hastings a Community Development Trust has received a grant of £11.4m from Heritage Lottery Fund to redevelop the historic pier. This is towards a total project cost of £13.8m of which some will be raised through donations and some through community shares - less than £0.5m.

There is such interest in this building and its fate in Manchester that it might be possible to do something like this. The problem up to now has been that this interest has been passive and those people that are concerned about it have felt powerless to do anything. The City Council tried to do what they could, but they failed. Perhaps it is time for another approach and for the people to act.

I think that other investors would come on board too, like the co-op group and gmpvf or rich people like Hucknall and Hook, but the crucial thing is that there is a community of interest that wants to do something and that can bid for funding such as Heritage Lottery and others. As I said earlier it still may not be enough to prise the building from Britannia, but then that is the case with all options now that the CPO has failed.

If you and some other people on here want to have a meeting with the Community Shares Team, I can introduce you. Could this virtual forum become the driver that leads to a physical development project in Manchester? Maybe we should be careful what we wish for!

Cheers G
Excellent idea, even if it fails, it would still create vast amounts of publicity for the cause, and create lots of bad publicity for Langsam and his dire hotels, which might just scare him into action.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 02:22 PM   #705
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Originally Posted by Garibaldi773 View Post
Well done for resurrecting this issue Adam.

I wonder if there may be an opportunity here for a fresh approach with those of us that signed the petition taking the lead rather than cheering on the benevolent dictator, Sir HB.

FC United raised £1.6m from supporters in community shares towards the new stadium. At the time that they raised the money they did not know where the stadium would be and they did not own any land. However, the share issue helped them to secure further money and do the deal with MCC. These are community shares and so the governance is like a co-operative - one member, one vote and the shares are not to be traded on the open market. You can read more here:

http://www.communityshares.org.uk/

I am thinking that a solution for London Road Fire Station could be to establish a Community Development Trust with the intention of acquiring and developing the building for the benefit of the people of Manchester. This means that neither Britannia or Argent will get to build their hotel, but there are other things that the building could be used for and it was once mooted by MCC that it could become a cultural centre.

The Development Trust would seek funding from MCC and Heritage Lottery Fund to develop the building as well as putting public pressure on Britannia to sell it. If 500 or more people bought shares then they would own the Trust and have an equal say in what went on the site. There is more to it than that, but it is a fairly new concept. It might not be enough to persuade Britannia to sell, but it could be. There could also be an (un-connected, of course) campaign to boycott Britannia's other hotels in Manchester and to encourage visitors to do the same that might hurt their profits.

I read recently that in Hastings a Community Development Trust has received a grant of £11.4m from Heritage Lottery Fund to redevelop the historic pier. This is towards a total project cost of £13.8m of which some will be raised through donations and some through community shares - less than £0.5m.

There is such interest in this building and its fate in Manchester that it might be possible to do something like this. The problem up to now has been that this interest has been passive and those people that are concerned about it have felt powerless to do anything. The City Council tried to do what they could, but they failed. Perhaps it is time for another approach and for the people to act.

I think that other investors would come on board too, like the co-op group and gmpvf or rich people like Hucknall and Hook, but the crucial thing is that there is a community of interest that wants to do something and that can bid for funding such as Heritage Lottery and others. As I said earlier it still may not be enough to prise the building from Britannia, but then that is the case with all options now that the CPO has failed.

If you and some other people on here want to have a meeting with the Community Shares Team, I can introduce you. Could this virtual forum become the driver that leads to a physical development project in Manchester? Maybe we should be careful what we wish for!

Cheers G
A great idea! All I know is if the old way isn't working something fresh has to come along. The Manchester Mechanics has offered me premises beyond the 'big meeting' where I think MCC needs a few home truths and people certainly deserve to express their opinions. They would be great contacts for a Manchester group. Most Mancunians do hope for something better, something cultural, multi purpose venue above some shite Hotel or private dominated place. I know that this message needs to be very clear and steered beyond MCC's drive to immediacy and their bias. For once the Cities opinions needs to count and the public being ignored, patronized and overlooked has to stop. Yes it's an idealism but MCC are too guilty of this.

All starting in January again. I don't know what the interest will be... but... this bloody deserves lottery funding!

As for the dreadful Pickles I love this article
http://www.guardian.co.uk/theguardia...overnment-cuts Eric Pickles: Public enemy number one? "Could the coalition's "public chum number one" be becoming its public enemy number one"?

Best quote Pickles's mix of relentlessness and slipperiness: "He's a wily old fox. He plans out what he wants to achieve."

I am naively going to wade through this zenith of a leader and 'decision' making background! 80 pgs but doesn't copy text from this pdf!

Totally agree Manchester's High and Mighty attitude needs to truly embrace the public opinions and stop railroading and estranging a massive talent pool, true visions for the city and the sensibilities of the public deserving a great legacy rather than some knocked up BS by the 'Big Wigs'. Transparency from both sides is what we've needed and never got, especially seeing what the decision process 'is' and being clear that as the public we exist and have bloody good opinions too.

I am certainly not going to meet SHB and be like a fan club cheerleader. I wanted to uncover the passion and the best opinions Manchester has! I am not going to sit there and go whatever you think! We deserve better, just happens I am on the Councils side re: injustice of CPO, but certainly did not start a petition to be compliant small fry's in supporting 'whatever they decide'.

Meeting me only and yes I am naive is going to be no good if I meet them alone without a view to facilitating knowledge, opinions and professionalism that far exceeds mine! So going to demand it!

Throughout the CPO on first glance there's a lot of reference to there not being a sense of what would be good in terms of the public interest but then of-course, we were never asked! That's why we need to speak up.

Speak soon... train soon and off for Xmas. Enjoy all

Last edited by moveupandon; December 26th, 2012 at 04:56 PM.
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Old December 24th, 2012, 11:52 AM   #706
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In the christmas spirit... maybe a good use for this building after redevelopment would be a new home for the Salvation Army facilities that are due to be relocated from First Street. This potentially, provides guaranteed income over an extended period of time to justify the investment by all parties now. Having said that, I am sure that the Salvation Army will not want to get embroiled in the Britannia ownership issue.

This sort of social housing/hostel project could be a valid use of what was originally a housing complex for public sector workers - as well as their place of work. Happy holidays!
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Old December 25th, 2012, 08:25 PM   #707
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Originally Posted by tomegranate View Post
That's not bias, that's the planning inspector making a delegated decision in the name of the SoS. The responsibility of the decision lies with the secretary of state - it's in his power to appoint someone else to consider cases on his behalf - that's just the process - you're reading bias into it where there is none.
Our planning inspector dear Manchester!

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/...cle1011988.ece

Now, however, Griffiths finds himself at the centre of a political storm,
accused of blighting historic sites to help the government meet its renewable
energy targets by giving the go-ahead for wind farms in some of Britain’s most
sensitive landscapes.
In his most recent ruling, Griffiths gave permission for four wind turbines to
be built on the Duke of Gloucester's land in Northamptonshire close to the
grade I listed Tudor summer house, Lyveden New Bield, which belongs to the
National Trust.
Both the trust and English Heritage are examining Griffiths’s ruling. “We will
be reviewing whether the inspector gave proper consideration to Lyveden and[/LEFT]
if this gives rise to a possible legal challenge,” English Heritage said.

Describing Griffiths’s ruling in the Naseby case as “provocative” and “antidemocratic”,
he said: “Mr Griffiths has got a number of his most recent
decisions completely wrong.”

PDF here: http://www.lizlake.com/images/storie...ht_article.pdf

This aligns Eric Pickles ideals with Paul Griffiths similar agendas) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/ene...ar-battle.html

As trying to be more careful with my 'language' I'll copy other peoples opinions from forums and articles on Paul Griffiths who made #LRFS report and was choosen by Eric Pickles.

"The main problem with the Inspectorate is that inspectors think they know it all, misguidedly think they are doing a service for the community but, because they are mostly technical illiterates, sophistically academically deprived of practical experience".

"Griffiths seems to be destroying England's countryside and planning process single handed. The man is a complete arse".

About corruption "I bet you’re glad you made the jump. Part of you piece would not be possible if you were still in the Conservatives" on MEP website Roger Helms who agrees with following statements

"I hope you will alert the inspector to your blog entry. These people need to know that their idiocy is being noticed".

About money and vested interests
"It’s all about defining who makes money, and who pays, by force;

1. Create the perception of crisis.
2. Proffer your own pre-determined, convenient solution.
3. Lobby your solution into law (via committee, legislative body, executive order, etc…)
4. Profit by force at the expense of the masses.
5. Repeat".


Critcism by an MEP on the planning process "Great Idea David. I was told that the Inspector, Mr. Paul Griffiths (the same one who allowed the egregious wind-farm within a mile of my home) was hearing an appeal in Thrapston, Northants, and I very nearly went there to accost him. But thinking better of it, I contacted the Planning Inspectorate and asked for Mr. Griffiths’ e-mail address. They refused to give it to me. It’s against the rules. So as an elected MEP I can’t contact a public official on a matter of concern to a constituent. Unbelievable again. But I did send an incandescent e-mail to the Planning Inspectorate’s complaints line. I’ll let you know if I hear from them".

I'm sure there's a lot more out there! Doesn't sound many people all over the UK were happy they got lumbered with this chosen one!

I will or will see if a journalist will ask Paul Griffiths if he regrets his decision (of course he won't confirm that, but nice to ask I think). Ironically in 80 pages of the report a lot is against Britannia and was sceptical that they'd 'do anything' yet one of the key reasons he turned down MCC was Argent would finish late 2014! Whereas Britannia promised to finish 6 months before! That worked out well didn't it!

Great Logic! I wonder if he still he the same / his own opinion (still)? What's very ironic is he doesn't seem supportive of Britannia through much of the report and doubts what they say... er why then...

I will look at this report in detail and have encouraged some journalists to (whether they will or not)... but tonight just posting (as this is a needed break away from Xmas relatives)!!!

Still - I think as a system, if a SoC&LG, whatever party, whatever political biases, can pre-empt support from their planning officer for possible opinions, where is the impartiality? A Daily Express article here puts their contentious decisions again in the same breath (http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/...e-s-wind-farms).

I don't think Manchester should NOT question these policy/ these decision makers/ this planning inspector in detail. Just an opinion.

Also not that happy that Pickles office reply basically removes him from any decision making or doesn't have a paper trail of what he has written to make his decision unless he just agrees with whatever the planning officer says

Last edited by moveupandon; December 29th, 2012 at 04:09 PM.
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Old December 27th, 2012, 02:45 PM   #708
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http:// http://www.telegraph.co.uk/n...age-crime.html

One word answer. Yes.
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Old December 29th, 2012, 04:12 PM   #709
moveupandon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moveupandon View Post
Our planning inspector dear Manchester!

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/...cle1011988.ece

Now, however, Griffiths finds himself at the centre of a political storm,
accused of blighting historic sites to help the government meet its renewable
energy targets by giving the go-ahead for wind farms in some of Britain’s most
sensitive landscapes.
In his most recent ruling, Griffiths gave permission for four wind turbines to
be built on the Duke of Gloucester's land in Northamptonshire close to the
grade I listed Tudor summer house, Lyveden New Bield, which belongs to the
National Trust.
Both the trust and English Heritage are examining Griffiths’s ruling. “We will
be reviewing whether the inspector gave proper consideration to Lyveden and[/LEFT]
if this gives rise to a possible legal challenge,” English Heritage said.

Describing Griffiths’s ruling in the Naseby case as “provocative” and “antidemocratic”,
he said: “Mr Griffiths has got a number of his most recent
decisions completely wrong.”

PDF here: http://www.lizlake.com/images/storie...ht_article.pdf

This aligns Eric Pickles ideals with Paul Griffiths similar agendas) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/ene...ar-battle.html

As trying to be more careful with my 'language' I'll copy other peoples opinions from forums and articles on Paul Griffiths who made #LRFS report and was choosen by Eric Pickles.

"The main problem with the Inspectorate is that inspectors think they know it all, misguidedly think they are doing a service for the community but, because they are mostly technical illiterates, sophistically academically deprived of practical experience".

"Griffiths seems to be destroying England's countryside and planning process single handed. The man is a complete arse".

About corruption "I bet you’re glad you made the jump. Part of you piece would not be possible if you were still in the Conservatives" on MEP website Roger Helms who agrees with following statements

"I hope you will alert the inspector to your blog entry. These people need to know that their idiocy is being noticed".

About money and vested interests
"It’s all about defining who makes money, and who pays, by force;

1. Create the perception of crisis.
2. Proffer your own pre-determined, convenient solution.
3. Lobby your solution into law (via committee, legislative body, executive order, etc…)
4. Profit by force at the expense of the masses.
5. Repeat".


Critcism by an MEP on the planning process "Great Idea David. I was told that the Inspector, Mr. Paul Griffiths (the same one who allowed the egregious wind-farm within a mile of my home) was hearing an appeal in Thrapston, Northants, and I very nearly went there to accost him. But thinking better of it, I contacted the Planning Inspectorate and asked for Mr. Griffiths’ e-mail address. They refused to give it to me. It’s against the rules. So as an elected MEP I can’t contact a public official on a matter of concern to a constituent. Unbelievable again. But I did send an incandescent e-mail to the Planning Inspectorate’s complaints line. I’ll let you know if I hear from them".

I'm sure there's a lot more out there! Doesn't sound many people all over the UK were happy they got lumbered with this chosen one!

I will or will see if a journalist will ask Paul Griffiths if he regrets his decision (of course he won't confirm that, but nice to ask I think). Ironically in 80 pages of the report a lot is against Britannia and was sceptical that they'd 'do anything' yet one of the key reasons he turned down MCC was Argent would finish late 2014! Whereas Britannia promised to finish 6 months before! That worked out well didn't it!

Great Logic! I wonder if he still he the same / his own opinion (still)? What's very ironic is he doesn't seem supportive of Britannia through much of the report and doubts what they say... er why then...

I will look at this report in detail and have encouraged some journalists to (whether they will or not)... but tonight just posting (as this is a needed break away from Xmas relatives)!!!

Still - I think as a system, if a SoC&LG, whatever party, whatever political biases, can pre-empt support from their planning officer for possible opinions, where is the impartiality? A Daily Express article here puts their contentious decisions again in the same breath (http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/...e-s-wind-farms).

I don't think Manchester should NOT question these policy/ these decision makers/ this planning inspector in detail. Just an opinion.

Also not that happy that Pickles office reply basically removes him from any decision making or doesn't have a paper trail of what he has written to make his decision unless he just agrees with whatever the planning officer says

Wow! Take this response about Paul Griffiths from Parliament MP http://www.tw312.org.uk/wp-content/u...ter-Jan-12.pdf

Powerful words
Appended below a hearfelt statement made by the MP Chris Heaton-Harris in an adjournment debate at
Westminster prior to the Christmas recess on the decision by Mr Paul Griffiths, an Inspector appointed by
the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, to approve the wind farm at Kelmarsh,
Northamptonshire.

“That brings me to some unbelievably bad news I received yesterday about my constituency. There was—
how can I put it?—a disgraceful, vulgar, disrespectful, terrible, shameful, contemptible, detestable,
dishonourable, disreputable, ignoble, mean, offensive, scandalous, shabby, shady, shocking, shoddy,
unworthy, deplorable, awful, calamitous, dire, disastrous, distressing, dreadful, faulty, grim,
horrifying, lamentable, lousy, mournful, pitiable, regrettable, reprehensible, rotten, sad, sickening, tragic,
woeful, wretched, abhorrent, abominable, crass, despicable, inferior, odious, unworthy, atrocious, heinous,
loathsome, revolting, scandalous, squalid, tawdry, cowardly, opprobrious, insulting, malevolent, scurrilous
and basically stinkingly poor decision of the Planning Inspectorate
to approve the Kelmarsh wind farm,
which will devastate huge swathes of beautiful rural Northamptonshire. It used an old-fashioned east
midlands regional plan, which I thought we had abolished in the Localism Act 2011, did not take into
account any emerging policy in this area, not least the national planning policy framework, and used the
targets, which the hon. Member for Brighton, Pavilion is so passionately attached to, of getting 20% of our
energy from renewables by 2020.
It is unbelievable that one planning inspector can overrule all elements of democracy, local and national,
including parish and district council opinion, MPs, Lords and Members of the European Parliament, and
say, “Well, actually, because of these particularly poor policies we have, forget democracy. This is what you
are having.” That is what upsets people about the onshore wind industry. The sooner that can change, the
better.
Significant damage will be done to the local environment, and even more will be done to what my
constituents might think comes with the Localism Act. If I were a Secretary of State in the Department for
Energy and Climate Change and was driving down the A14, I really would put my foot down. A three-point
penalty easily outweighs what I and my constituents think of him, this decision and the policy it is based on.
That said, even I wish the Secretary of State and everyone else in the House a very merry Christmas”.
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Old December 29th, 2012, 04:55 PM   #710
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What the feck were they doing working on the exterior of a building at 6.50am in a morning? Presumably the flats opposite were happy about this?

Best,
Slip
Hmm, I rather suspect that had the cherry-picker not failed, it might have been instead reported that the building had "gone on fire"....
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Old December 29th, 2012, 05:11 PM   #711
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Originally Posted by Garibaldi773 View Post
Well done for resurrecting this issue Adam.

I wonder if there may be an opportunity here for a fresh approach with those of us that signed the petition taking the lead rather than cheering on the benevolent dictator, Sir HB.

FC United raised £1.6m from supporters in community shares towards the new stadium. At the time that they raised the money they did not know where the stadium would be and they did not own any land. However, the share issue helped them to secure further money and do the deal with MCC. These are community shares and so the governance is like a co-operative - one member, one vote and the shares are not to be traded on the open market. You can read more here:

http://www.communityshares.org.uk/

I am thinking that a solution for London Road Fire Station could be to establish a Community Development Trust with the intention of acquiring and developing the building for the benefit of the people of Manchester. This means that neither Britannia or Argent will get to build their hotel, but there are other things that the building could be used for and it was once mooted by MCC that it could become a cultural centre.

The Development Trust would seek funding from MCC and Heritage Lottery Fund to develop the building as well as putting public pressure on Britannia to sell it. If 500 or more people bought shares then they would own the Trust and have an equal say in what went on the site. There is more to it than that, but it is a fairly new concept. It might not be enough to persuade Britannia to sell, but it could be. There could also be an (un-connected, of course) campaign to boycott Britannia's other hotels in Manchester and to encourage visitors to do the same that might hurt their profits.

I read recently that in Hastings a Community Development Trust has received a grant of £11.4m from Heritage Lottery Fund to redevelop the historic pier. This is towards a total project cost of £13.8m of which some will be raised through donations and some through community shares - less than £0.5m.

There is such interest in this building and its fate in Manchester that it might be possible to do something like this. The problem up to now has been that this interest has been passive and those people that are concerned about it have felt powerless to do anything. The City Council tried to do what they could, but they failed. Perhaps it is time for another approach and for the people to act.

I think that other investors would come on board too, like the co-op group and gmpvf or rich people like Hucknall and Hook, but the crucial thing is that there is a community of interest that wants to do something and that can bid for funding such as Heritage Lottery and others. As I said earlier it still may not be enough to prise the building from Britannia, but then that is the case with all options now that the CPO has failed.

If you and some other people on here want to have a meeting with the Community Shares Team, I can introduce you. Could this virtual forum become the driver that leads to a physical development project in Manchester? Maybe we should be careful what we wish for!

Cheers G
If the City Council couldn't buy the fire station with the legal powers they have (CPO), what makes you think Langsam would sell it to anyone else? The only way you'll get to buy it is to offer the market value of the site without the Grade II listed building on it (which will be substantially higher than the value as is). Otherwise, clearly Langsam will procrastinate and procrastinate until the damn thing falls down, then rub his hands with glee.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 11:55 AM   #712
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Originally Posted by bertyboy View Post
If the City Council couldn't buy the fire station with the legal powers they have (CPO), what makes you think Langsam would sell it to anyone else? The only way you'll get to buy it is to offer the market value of the site without the Grade II listed building on it (which will be substantially higher than the value as is). Otherwise, clearly Langsam will procrastinate and procrastinate until the damn thing falls down, then rub his hands with glee.
Still worth a shot though. I'm going to be piling out the letters. Not likely could one day be, more exposure for the story, possibilities that weren't seen and perhaps enough pressure to force the hand of power... Even that unlikely maybe is worth a shot, I think.
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Old January 2nd, 2013, 11:31 PM   #713
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If the City Council couldn't buy the fire station with the legal powers they have (CPO), what makes you think Langsam would sell it to anyone else? The only way you'll get to buy it is to offer the market value of the site without the Grade II listed building on it (which will be substantially higher than the value as is). Otherwise, clearly Langsam will procrastinate and procrastinate until the damn thing falls down, then rub his hands with glee.
Over and above market value plus a binding restrictive covenent preventing its use as a hotel. Even then, I guess the stubbornness of Mr Langsam means even that will be a few years after he pops his clogs. Before then it would have completely accidently, not at all in an arson like way and in no way suspiciously burnt to the ground....
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Old January 4th, 2013, 03:23 PM   #714
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Over and above market value plus a binding restrictive covenent preventing its use as a hotel. Even then, I guess the stubbornness of Mr Langsam means even that will be a few years after he pops his clogs. Before then it would have completely accidently, not at all in an arson like way and in no way suspiciously burnt to the ground....
If it does ever burn/ fall down what's the bet the prime suspects would get away with it?

Perhaps a way forward would be a little "Britannia Hotel" (maybe their first 5* (cough)) in a little section of the building (just to appease the great advocate of Manchester that is dear Mr L - perhaps for vanity sakes naming this section after the great man) (as it seems building too big for him to cope with) and then all the multi-faceted aspects of venue, museums, residencies, boutiques, restaurants, conference centre etc. in the rest.

BUT these "negotiations" and "truce" that Manchester City Council wants would have to be with a reasonable person and so far there's little evidence of that!
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Old January 5th, 2013, 02:54 AM   #715
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I think a big positive step would be to, somehow, slip this thread into the other UK City forums under the guise of fantastic British architecture/heritage at risk from the corporate money-making machine!

Perhaps a UK-wide version of this thread across all city forums would be a good idea:
I.e. "Buildings at risk in your city, which would you save?"

Then, next step; a combined petition for better management of cultural/heritage buildings that could potentially hit 100k signatures on that HM Govt ePetitions page.

If you can get this project adopted in the London forum, those signatures will shoot up - but you will never get sufficient public backing for LRFS in isolation.

Good luck! I hope 2013 is a good year for this project.
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Old January 5th, 2013, 07:41 PM   #716
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Originally Posted by RoryT View Post
I think a big positive step would be to, somehow, slip this thread into the other UK City forums under the guise of fantastic British architecture/heritage at risk from the corporate money-making machine!

Perhaps a UK-wide version of this thread across all city forums would be a good idea:
I.e. "Buildings at risk in your city, which would you save?"

Then, next step; a combined petition for better management of cultural/heritage buildings that could potentially hit 100k signatures on that HM Govt ePetitions page.

If you can get this project adopted in the London forum, those signatures will shoot up - but you will never get sufficient public backing for LRFS in isolation.

Good luck! I hope 2013 is a good year for this project.
Thanks good advice. Such a huge project, and so need to join ranks with others being impacted by

a) bad business
b) bad politics
c) implications of destruction by bad politics
d) people interested in legal precedents set by bad decisions
e) public pressure groups for public interest in sympathetic redevelopments for Heritage & History

Its kind of you especially when there are a few really cruel and obstructive people jumping on the petition offering no constructive advice and celebrate in being critical and hostile without offering any possibilities, genuine support or desire for change in this case.

Doing more with LRFS but mostly been a lone adventure and all alongside paid work.

It really is like unravelling the threads to discover how knotted together the issues of corporate neglect/ heritage abuse / beauracacies / red tape/ funding/ political agendas / policies that aren't working are. There's such paralysis and I genuinely believe this political paralysis is so much greater in the North West/ Manchester.

Out of my depth at times so all support needed and any advocates that can assist most welcome!

I've made some leigh-weigh but not enough! Makes me think this could be a full time job for someone. It certainly makes me wonder how productive English Heritage are! Is it a lack of strategy or awareness or power and political assistance that impedes them? After all 2013 is the 27th year of this bullshit! MCC certainly have to accept blame also on this and many city issues. Their lack of dynamic strategies and doing things in isolation without consulting or listening to the public really needs to change also. BUT the public also have to take accountability beyond apathy also. Perhaps a new and effective Think Tank needs to be made for Manchester that is apolitical?

Really hoping something can be gained by this venture. Something has to be done. I refuse to accept this situation is powerless BUT I so need the help people can offer and good advice and people taking leads up themselves! Letters, contacts, media, images, support are just so needed!

People please do read the reports, write letters to Langsam, Pickles, Boles, Griffiths our MP, whoever! I'm sure a great job can be done. Do post all updates on here and keep us all informed if you want to get involved and build momentum!


Though I've been accused by some real rotten trolls as having no interest in this building/ this building should be knocked down/ the decisions were fair /Langsam is an innocent victim of circumstances / 100% decision were completely without political agendas (so don't question them) / it is only the Councils fault / Britannia should be able to do as they want as they "own" #LRFS - I really feel strongly about this case else I wouldn't have begun! But I do not think the message of the petition is so horrible! How can it be? (Except for those who celebrate in crabbing and ripping everything to shreds while they sit doing NOTHING about the cases they pertain to care about, but pre-empting and delighting in failures and any of my misunderstandings and experiential limitations). People can start their own campaigns, raise their own voices or think there is no twisted agenda behind this petition FFS!!!

Just made me so aware (& beginning to discover) how Manchester is really being effected and impeded by so many factors that mean as a city its dynamic and great future is being limited in so many unacceptable ways.

The time I can devote to this and enhancing the cause I will do and I do agree, finding the links and getting into the wider picture is so necessary. Just hope the message of justice is heard and taken up by people and organisations that can help!

Best wishes

Last edited by moveupandon; January 5th, 2013 at 09:00 PM.
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Old January 19th, 2013, 08:42 PM   #717
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Dear All

Public Meeting: London Road Fire Station on Wednesday 27th February at 7pm
The Mechanics Centre, 103 Princess Street, Manchester, M1 6DD

I would like to invite anyone who is interested to come to the meeting for London Road Fire Station and how as a city we can progress past the inept politics and neglectful ownership that has marred this great At Risk (1998) Grade II* Listed Building (1974).

The Manchester Mechanics centre has kindly given us their venue to hold this meeting next month. I hope to get as many parties involved and am asking key figures to speak about this tragically abused Heritage Icon. I hope this meeting will be inspiring and inclusive to opinions about how our city can move forward with this extraordinarily shameful case.

Key invites will include the MP Lucy Powell, Manchester City Councilors, Manchester City Council leaders, English Heritage, media representatives and Britannia should they choose to face the questions and concerns of the public.

This is the 27th year of Britannia’s inactive ownership. In December 2012 ruling by MP Eric Pickles awarded Britannia 1.5 million legal fees for breaking their promises and commitment to the redevelopment of this building by 2014. The failed and controversial Compulsory Purchase Order was successfully appealed by Britannia in November 2011, then in February 2012, after such an impassioned appeal, declared: “Developing the scheme as it stands, would not be sustainable either in the current climate or the foreseeable future”.

We as a city either face the incredulity and sadness of witnessing this building in further decline or we must discover action and unity in achieving a just and dynamic future for this unique building.

There are many implications that this ruling has had for Manchester politically and the hope is to to overcome such rulings through public involvement and pressure. Similarly the implications of how corporations are permitted to abuse, neglect and destroy English Heritage has wider implications beyond our city.

Please bring your questions, ideas, strategies, opinions and commitment to assist where you can with this ongoing case. Your involvement and assistance will be greatly appreciated.

Yours sincerely


London Road Fire Station Petition Founder
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Old January 20th, 2013, 09:04 PM   #718
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Hi All!

Updates!

Meeting above. (Invites still being sent, so will confirm).
Media attending meeting.
Head of English Heritage North West Attending.
City Councillors Attending
A documentary being done as 'taster' to see if can gain more media.
Still to invite Britannia. (Doubt they'll intend and is an intimidating letter to write, not that I 'have anything they could 'sue' for but debts and I'm running things by a Barrister friend)

See letter to Planning Inspectorate below.

(& please to the haters, please don't attend the meeting if you have nothing constructive to offer apart from support for Britannia/the Planning Decision). This meeting is hoping to move things forward and gain expsoure).

_________________________________________________________________


Dear Planning Inspectorate

I hope this email can be passed on for formal comment by the Planning Inspector Paul Griffiths. If this is not possible, I hope your department will offer a formal statement for the Public Meeting on 27th February in Manchester.

Key invites that have accepted will be MP Lucy Powell, English Heritage North West Planning Director, representative of Manchester City Council, the media and other key speakers. As I believe in the right to protest and also in transparency, this document will be made available online and any replies will be sent to the media. I would also like to invite for this a representative from the Planning Office to attend the public meeting (please find invite below of details of the time and venue).

I have read the November 2011 report in detail, where Paul Griffiths (appointed by the Secretary of Communities and Local Government) gave the recommendations to Eric Pickles to not confirm the CPO for this iconic building in Manchester.

I have also read of the controversies surrounding Paul Griffiths decisions in the Sunday Times (8th April 2012) and that a passionate Parliamentary Debate MP Chris Heaton-Harris described “overrule all elements of democracy, local and national, including parish and district council opinion”. Similarly in this case I hope instead of working in isolationism the Planning Inspectorate can offer Manchester assistance and afford our city respect and an apology or condemnation of Britannia in this case.

As you may be aware three months after the appeal for the CPO, Britannia hotels made the following statement three months later in February 2012: “Developing the scheme as it stands, would not be sustainable either in the current climate or the foreseeable future”.

Infuriatingly and distressingly for the people of Manchester, this inaction looks to continue risking dire consequences for this At Risk (1998) Grade II* (1974) Heritage which in point 89 of your report you (Paul Griffiths) agreed there is evidence of neglect and no reparation for over twenty years.

In point 11 of your report you said the main reason to reject the CPO would be "is there certainty, or at least near certainty the Britannia will complete the conversion of the LRFS to a 4* hotel with equivalent by 2014? If so then the CPO should not be confirmed”? Now the reality is they have not, so does this change the implications of this entire report and its recommendations?

Your question in point 96 that if Britannia does not adhere to the timetable presented then "the building condition will deteriorate and the cost of repairs will escalate". This now is clearly happening and as a member of Manchester public and all those who sign my petition we are witnessing the reality of seeing this building and its uncertain future each day. It has led many commentators to conclude that this is the intention behind not continuing with the proposed redevelopment as promised, i.e. decline and demolition.

You say yourself in point 114 that "to refuse to confirm the CPO would be to continue the present unsatisfactory state of affairs which has already continued far too long".

Britannia's flawed argument that there is no economic development for the hotel industry is being directly contradicted with the Olympus hotel premises being built opposite the LRFS on Whitworth Street and the buoyant tourist market. In Point 184 you discuss how Mr Langston "rejected the assertion Britannia had no intention to redevelop", yet at the risk of being rhetorical this is now untrue. Commentators have asserted in believing this position took a certain gullibility with over 25 years of evidence to a lack of care, or commitment and I wonder if you care to defend against this allegation? In conversations with other Planning Inspectors and retired Planning Inspectors they have confirmed and said they would not have made this decision and find similar outrage in Manchester’s current position.

In recent business news it has been suggested that £25 million has been given to Pontins and so therefore this directly contradicts with his position of the importance of the redevelopment of LRFS or the immediate willingness to release these funds.
In Point 278 you predicted correctly "if the CPO is not confirmed there would appear to be no reason why Mr Langsam and/or Britannia might decide once again to put the LRFS on the backburner and focus attention elsewhere".

Yet a direct contradiction is found in point 191 you say “Britannia's evidence is clear and compelling: it has the expertise of the financial resources and the commitment to start the development once the shadow of the CPO is lifted". This however has clearly not been the case and our city has recently incurred the 1.5 million legal costs of this inactivity and broken promises that came three months after your writing this report.

Now considering the recent evidence within this case I would like to ask you the following questions:

· Would your position to reject the CPO remain the same at this current time?
· How do you propose for Manchester to progress with this case? Indeed considering the current developments do you think that a new CPO should unequivocally be supported?
· Do you consider it fair that Manchester City Council was asked to pay for the legal costs after promises were made and broken?
· What do you consider to be the legal implications of this case in terms of corporate ownership of At Risk Heritage and the national implication this has?
· In your report, though you question Britannia's commitment I wonder how close you were to confirming the CPO?
· In your report you question and suggest a lack of public interest in the building being redeveloped. How do you justify this position?
· How do you defend against the allegation this case represents a political bias and regionalism that influenced this planning decision?

As a city we are dealing with the consequences of having to see the distressing position of seeing a Great Heritage Icon decay. I hope that rather than being estranged from the public and political decisions that a representative of the Planning Inspectorate would be kind enough to attend the meeting or indeed make a written statement on these questions and comments about the reality facing LRFS.

Please find relevant attachments and I hope to hear from you or a relevant contact as soon as possible.

Yours sincerely



Adam Prince
Petition Founder
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Old January 20th, 2013, 09:20 PM   #719
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Good luck! Don't think there are any haters on here are there? What you need is as much media attention as possible to put pressure on Brittania to sell to the council. Hopefully this meeting will get you that.
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Old January 20th, 2013, 09:31 PM   #720
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Good luck! Don't think there are any haters on here are there? What you need is as much media attention as possible to put pressure on Brittania to sell to the council. Hopefully this meeting will get you that.
Thanks! On some forums (always get the provokers and some awful stirrers especially in comments on stories) and one user on here! MEN MCon definitely confirmed, but want the TV News and trying to persevere for feature in At Risk Heritage UK Documentary! Will keep on until I get there!

PS: Any help, letters writing, exposure, contacts and speakers people might know, do contact me:

manchesterfirestation@yahoo.co.uk

Best wishes. (I'm off for a glass of wine and some chillaxing as been on this all day).
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