Monday, 8 November 2010

Councillor's letter Argus won't print . . .

So I'm reproducing it here:-

"Your recent article (November 2) on buildings at risk missed an opportunity to tell readers of the amazing work Brighton & Hove city council is doing to protect the city’s heritage.

This council specifically - and councils generally - were mentioned in your article seven times.  In fact, among 25 buildings at risk in the city, five are council-owned.  In each of these five cases, solutions are either near completion or being considered.

The article calls for the local authority to work with property owners and communities.  This is already happening a very great deal.

Over the last two years there has been a net reduction in buildings at risk.  Thanks to our pro-active approach of managing the situation 13 buildings are no longer at risk while seven new at risk buildings have been identified as a direct result of our own surveying.

We are now acting swiftly when listed buildings become vacant or when we become aware that they are not being maintained, so that we can monitor them, work with the owners and take action where necessary.

At my Environment Cabinet Member Meeting recently we addressed the case of 19 Brunswick Place. This was long vacant, in serious disrepair and subject to regular squatting. It had attracted numerous complaints from neighbours. We resolved to carry out the urgent repairs - and bill the owner - to make it weathertight and secure.  We were about to send in a contractor when the owner sold the property. We have since worked positively with the new owner, who has carried out the urgent works and is now discussing with us proposals to bring the building back into much-needed residential use.

A case in point is Marlborough House, which has now been repaired and restored following talks with the owners initiated by the council.  14 Montpelier Crescent was another vacant building suffering from a leaking roof. Again our intervention led to the sale of the building to new owners who are living in the property and have fully repaired the roof.

We fully expect to be able to remove other buildings from the at risk list in the coming months."

Cllr Geoffrey Theobald

No comments:

Post a Comment

In event of difficulty in adding comment, email:-