Skip to content

Protest To Save Arnold Circus!

October 23, 2020
by the gentle author

We need as many people as possible to join a socially-distanced peaceful protest at 10am this morning (Friday 23rd October) led by Dan Cruickshank to stop damage to the historic fabric of Arnold Circus on the Boundary Estate, Britain’s first Council Estate which is grade II listed.

Tower Hamlets Council have refused to listen to residents’ concerns about the corporate-style pedestrianisation and, this morning, they are pressing ahead with these works without completing the consultation or showing residents the final plans.

The Council are ignoring a demand by the Friends of Arnold Circus who requested that work be halted until final plans are approved. No heritage bodies were consulted about the pedestrianisation and when the Spitalfields Trust wrote expressing concerns on September 4th this was also ignored by the Council until prompted over a month later.

The Friends of Arnold Circus and the Spitalfields Trust welcome the pedestrianisation but question how it is being imposed without any public consensus and without any respect for the heritage.

Already damage has been done on the corner of Navarre St where a group of workmen, who admitted that they were pipe layers not stone masons, were tasked with removing and relaying original York paving that is over a hundred years old. Without skills in this specialist area and without the supervision of a heritage adviser, it is no surprise that stones have been broken and relaid incorrectly.

Proposed corporate style pedestrianisation of Arnold Circus that ignores the historic fabric and symmetry of the architecture


You may also like to read

Cherishing the Fabric of Arnold Circus

18 Responses leave one →
  1. Lorraine Van-Gelder permalink
    October 23, 2020

    I am appalled that Tower Hamlets has started work on this project without the relevant parties consent. I lived in this area for many years and played in the bandstand, as a child most days, after school. I love this area,whenever I go into London I always stroll to the bandstand.

    Yes developments in Shoreditch are great, old unused buildings bought back to life, but sometimes its nice to see areas as they were in days gone by.

    Prince Charles gave the circus a preservation order, I wonder if he is aware of this development.

    To me it seems like this will become another tourist spot, along with the flower market, but how do the Residents in this are feel about this? Yes we all need to move with the times, but really!!

  2. October 23, 2020

    Yet again, the Council charges ahead – I suppose we should be grateful that these changes are *meant* to improve the area rather than destroy it (as so often), but to go ahead without proper local consultation seems to be yet another example of Tower Hamlets Council’s high-handed and irresponsible behaviour.

  3. Mike Shingleton permalink
    October 23, 2020

    How bloody dare they!

    Sorry I can’t be there but fight the good fight!

  4. October 23, 2020

    As if we don’t have enough to feel sad about ! The Liveable Streets scheme is a good
    one in principle but where I live in E. Dulwich it is achieved by “boxes” across the
    road to prevent cars from going further or to enter. I find them ugly and spoil
    the whole atmosphere of the area. Surely bollards – good design – would do the
    job ? I have visited Arnold Circus many times over the last couple of years and
    am so angry at what I have just read about the plans.

  5. paul loften permalink
    October 23, 2020

    In this case, I can understand the anxiety of those who see a local authority not consulting residents and other interested parties before undertaking work that already has so many critics. I would appeal to the council to at least stop the ongoing work at Arnold Circus until comprehensive consultation has taken place. Tower hamlets should take a look at neighboring boroughs such as Redbridge where massive dissent, due to them imposing road closures without consultation has forced them to retreat. It needs people to come out and show their opposition.

  6. Rebecca Southin permalink
    October 23, 2020

    I’m a resident of the Arnold circus estate, Abingdon House.
    I’m horrified at the bullish way that TH council have pushed this through.
    I did raise concerns about busses being rerouted down Navarre Street, a narrow residential road with residents parking in both sides. This is a relatively quiet road (despite the ASB) and I’m appalled at the lack of consideration to residents. Not to mention destruction of a heritage site.

    No doubt while attention is focused on Liveable Streets, they will push through the Goodsyatd development.

  7. October 23, 2020

    I am personally extremely upset that a clearly tourism driven piece of poor and ill considered engineering could have been agreed by the Place team at LBTH and their colleagues or contractors who aren’t as protective of historic building fabric as they should be under the law.
    It demonstrates how ineffectual the authorities – responsible for conserving and protecting heritage, can be these days. It seems that LBTH appointed culturally insensitive or unknowledgeable people to run rough shod over local residents’ needs once again instead of doing what is right and listening to what the trusts have said on our behalf.’
    We have a right to be heard please!

  8. October 23, 2020

    Smells of brown envelopes.

  9. Pam permalink
    October 23, 2020

    John Biggs, do not close your eyes to the art the council of the 19th century left for us to appreciate. Tower Hamels does not need a ‘Donald Trump’ like you to plough through everything and destroy it because you are on the earth. Like a savage, angry baby!

    Save money, turn Arnold Circus into the beautiful place it always was and the residence will praise you for that. Don’t be a pillock!

  10. Sevilla Allen permalink
    October 23, 2020

    Arnold Circus is one of the hidden joys of London – it needs to be cherished. Please listen Tower Hamlets
    It is places like this that makes people come to London – War, greedy developments has destroyed so much. Let us cherish what is left.

  11. October 23, 2020

    Tower Hamlets Council should be ashamed , such cavalier behaviour and a total disregard
    for the local residents who have lived here for many years.
    It’s a disgrace.

  12. October 23, 2020

    Vandals wherever you look …

  13. Mark permalink
    October 23, 2020

    With you in spirit.
    As an aside, even in tory Suffolk, local business are helping to feed needy families this half term. What in hells name have we become.

  14. Mark permalink
    October 23, 2020

    That’s businesses and tory Scum, sorry.

  15. mlaiuppa permalink
    October 23, 2020

    I don’t understand how, with repeated violations by all parties, that Tower Hamlets and developers are allowed to continue this destruction. Laws are broken and nothing happens so they are emboldened to go further and further each time.

    Are the plans to replace these stones and take the originals off somewhere else? They must be worth more money than the likely concrete they are going to pour to replace them.

    It seems to me that a lot of this comes down to Tower Hamlets, that they are a corrupt organization and all must be replaced. And possibly prosecuted. I’m not sure how it works over there but there must be some sort of system.

  16. October 23, 2020

    Isn’t it illegal to start work without a public consultation? Has anyone written to the MP?

  17. Celine J. permalink
    December 6, 2020

    To the Council: Difficult to stomach that they are happy to destroy original Victorian streets but have not replaced the windows for over 20 years in some of the buildings. Also this is already a highly touristic/ pedestrian area. Do we really need more pedestrian streets? is parking for the habitant going to be impossible? How about you use our money to restore what exists, and actually consider our concerns?

  18. Ge Rome permalink
    March 22, 2021

    So sad ! !

    I was living in that part of England in the nineties and apart from the baby gangs assaulting u and the torrifying newer develops it is a lovely area full of character

    It will be like a face lift plastic surgery gone wrong,

    as any other creepy (craapy) glass and stainless steel subAtlantic re-shit-style

    Just to place dodgy led bulbs pillars blue lights emitting diodes
    and millimeters microwaves for the electromagnetic tsunami per the mind total control,
    blowing away what’s left of free will, immune system
    and the most important good taste !

    Keep calm and wash your hands it will be all fine !

    Only if you will find any spare water for doing so ! !

    Architecture died long ago together with common sense,
    only computer generated not even orthogonal projections
    With a hint of rotten bad taste shaken with gig tech
    that inevitably mismatch / clash with the highjacked reality
    It is all.part of a pc project !

Leave a Reply

Note: Comments may be edited. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS