Leicester Civic Society
Chairman's Report July 2017

12 July 2017


1. 20170973: 1, ST. ALBANS ROAD: Dreadful proposal for a block of student flats at a house by Stockdale Harrison c1890. Prominent hilltop, corner building at junction of London Road, St. Albans Road and Evington Road. For many years the home of a Dr. Carter, in 1956 the house was converted into a car showrooms and the front garden lost. In 1975 Lloyds Bank took it over and made a fair attempt at healing the damage done to the ground floor front by the careful use of matching bricks. However this proposal wants to undo all of that and construct a huge five floor extension on the car park to the rear. Quite apart from the fact that it will stare straight across at Edwin Lutyen’s recently restored park gates and lodges (Listed Grade 1) this would have an adverse affect on South Highfields, Evington Footpath and New Walk conservation areas. Ena has already objected on our behalf and it goes to CAP on Wednesday 12. There is no objection to building on the car park but it must be at least two stories lower and of a far better design that does not dominate the house. Everyone should object individually please. We have until 01 August.

2. EVINGTON FOOTPATH CONSERVATION AREA SOCIETY: I chaired the inaugural public meeting at St. James Church Hall on Thursday 15 June. Sixty local residents. As usual, there was great enthusiasm for a new society but little for the necessary voluntary officers to run it. I therefore had to read the riot act, threatening to close the meeting unless they appointed a treasurer - and they now have the officers needed and a committee of five others. So far so good. We wish them well. Attempting to strike whilst the iron is hot I have appealed for other new societies in the current Leicester Citizen.

3. GUIDED WALKS: “City of the Dead” Saturday 17 June was a big success, with 29 in the cemetery. Thank you to Pete and Leigh. Bookings for “Civil War” on Saturday 05 August are now open and as advertised in Leicester Citizen.

Newbold Verdon WI have booked me to do “Civil War” again on Monday 07 August.

Bookings for the Heritage Open Days walks are also open.

4. LEICESTER CITIZEN: Citizen is out and in addition to the guided walks bookings are open for the Kings Lynn Tour in September and the Annual Dinner in October.

5. 20171085: LEICESTER CENTRAL STATION: This has come to planning a lot quicker than I expected. I have written in broad support but reiterating previously expressed concerns over improved soft landscaping and links to the waterside. There is a wonderful opportunity to achieve the latter.

For your info:

· “CHANGING LEICESTER”: Michele and I attended the launch of this new exhibition at Newarke Houses Museum on Friday 30 June. There are audio-visual recordings of various luminaries: Konrad Smigeilski, Richard Buckley, Peter Liddle, Peter Soulsby - and me! There was however such a crowd that I couldn’t hear any speak and will return when it is quieter. The exhibition runs until 20 September. Don’t miss it.

· ROYAL INSTITUTE OF CHARTERED SURVEYORS: I was interviewed on 04 July in connexion with their survey into government changes in permitted development. (Only places chosen outside London were Reading, Leicester and Leeds)

· FESTIVAL OF BRITISH ARCHAEOLOGY: Launch of Leicester and Leicestershire events took place on 09 July at Jewry Wall Museum. The day was a big success.

· GREYFRIARS THI PROJECT BOARD: Meeting of 19 June cancelled. New date 17 July.

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