As the potential date of demolition of the Harvest Home draws near, the Town Council wrote to Basingstoke & Deane Borough Council again.
In a letter dated 8th August 2011 the Whitchurch Town Council stated, “the Council remains very concerned about the potential impact of the demolition of this locally important building on the adjoining Conservation Area”.
The Town Council pointed out a recent case law judgement regarding EU Environmental Impact Assessment that was highlighted in a ‘Conservation Bulletin’ publication by English Heritage. The Council also queried B&DBC as to whether they have taken into consideration policies surrounding ‘Heritage Assets’.
Heritage Assets, their letter quotes, “cannot be replaced and their loss has a cultural, environmental, economic and social impact…There should be a presumption in favour of the conservation of designated heritage assets”.
The letter concludes by stating,
“The Town Council does not believe that BDBC has given due consideration in pre application discussion to the potential loss of the Harvest Home as a recognised heritage asset and locally important building or its adverse impact on the setting of the Whitchurch Conservation Area”
There has not been a reply from B&DBC yet, according to the Town Council.
There is a meeting of B&DBC development control at 6:30pm Wednesday 17 Aug 2011 which will decide whether the hoarding around the site is permitted or not.
On a related note, a video has been put onto YouTube by one of the campaigners trying to save the Harvest Home. The video can be viewed on the campaign page HERE.
In the video, Andrew Reeves-Hall asks local residents about their views and describes the situation as of mid-August.
One local resident interviewed in the video, Colin Reeves (no relation to Andrew) of London Rd, says, “I thought this was a democracy where we could all ask questions…we should be able to have a say on what’s going on.”
Other follow-up videos are planned and more views from people in and out of town are sought, Andrew says.
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The letter from the Town Council is on their website HERE.
The Court of Appeal judgement regarding demolition is described in an article on page 46 of the English Heritage ‘Conservation Bulletin’ Issue 66 published 1 June 2011 which can be downloaded HERE.