February 26, 2005
Those Northern Slums Being Knocked Down.
Following all the kerfuffle about houses in the North being knocked down, claims and counter claims that they’re just horrible two up two downs and the like, a reporter decided to actually go and look at them.
Behind Prescot Road is Newsham Park, a handsome Grade II listed park
with a bandstand. Facing it is Prescot Drive, its huge derelict villas
with daylight showing through the rafters, which the council says it
did not have enough money to keep in good repair.
This makes little sense since, even in a city which has lost a quarter of its population since the war, you might expect large villas on a park to have value.
The council would not sell them and they are being allowed to fall down – even though they are in a conservation area.
It is not difficult to get the impression that what is going on here is not "market failure" but a failure caused by social engineering.
Areas shaded yellow on the map – for more intervention – exist all over Merseyside, some with spectacular houses.
A startling example is Hertford Road, Bootle, a street of five- bedroomed red brick villas built in 1893, one of a number of streets named after Oxford Colleges which run down to the walled-up docks.
Hertford Road is five minutes walk to Marks & Spencer in Bootle town centre and near the Metro station. At the end of the road is a park and a statue of George V stands on a plinth looking down the street, completing an attractive townscape.
All this is scheduled to come down.....
Obviously, just the sort of slums that have to be demolished.
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I guess that's the outcome of voting for a totalitarian NuLab. Destroy local housing stock, usurp local democracy with unelected regional bodies, destroy traditions, destroy our freedoms, rob our pension funds, sign away our sovereignty...
Posted by: Gorse Fox | Feb 26, 2005 8:55:08 AM
Tim, you can see one of the slum-dwellers here, actually picture inside the slum. It made me wretch I have to say. How can people live like that?
The magazine has 10 pages of views and pictures of the slum-dwellers who are, for some reason, indignant that they are to be forceably evicted by the state.
Posted by: Gareth | Feb 26, 2005 2:20:35 PM
I come from Liverpool and I know the area you speak of very well. It's an absolutely lovely area and those houses were once middle class houses in their heyday. Sadly over the years a minority of unsavoury people have moved there and brought the area down. It's such a shame that those lovely houses are actually currently in the process of being pulled down with shoeboxes being built in their place - yep the bulldozers are in as we speak and many of the houses are gone, new ones built. It's shortsighted and silly of the government to adopt the view that if they make an area "look nice and modern" somehow the unsavoury minority of people IN the area will become nice too! The effect is purely cosmetic, makes a lot of money in property revenue for the government and will not "regenerate" the area. The real issues are crime, education, health and social/citizenship skills! Not modern ridiculously expensive shoeboxes with gch and double glazing! I am livid about the way houses across Liverpool are being pulled down - it's all about greed and money, nothing to do with benefiting the population. That is obvious! Poeple are being paid off way below the market value for their property and then luxury apartments and houses are being built in their place costing about 4 times the amount. The government have no intention of putting those people back in their communities upon "regeneration" It's basically "Working class scallys - get out, we'll pay you off as we want rich people here now" This is NOT a labour government! Thank you x
Posted by: Jenny | Nov 21, 2006 8:11:42 PM