Letter: Victoria Park House - Destruction of Victorian past

Victoria Park House, Harrogate
Victoria Park House, Harrogate

Could I draw the readers’ attention to a recent article in the Harrogate Advertiser - “Tradition v demolition in fight over new office development” (Harrogate Advertiser, August 10). A recent planning application to demolish Victoria Park House - 18, Victoria Avenue and build on the site a new office complex must set a severe precedent in the destruction of Harrogate’s Victorian Heritage.

If this application is approved, another fine piece of Victorian architecture will be gone for ever only to be replaced by a modern, Biscuit tin monstrosity never suited to be built in such an area of Victorian architecture.

Victoria Avenue when built was the jewel in the crown of Victorian Harrogate and in my opinion should not be slowly destroyed as the planners are attempting to do. I have objected to this application on the grounds as follows:

A) - The application is for the demolition in a Conservation Area of Great Architectural Beauty.

B) - Their are enough empty office buildings in Harrogate town centre at the moment - why any more?

C) - Harrogate is crying out for new sites for housing - here’s is one right in the town centre.

D) It has been stated that the existing building is in a poor state of repair - so why not demolish the building, construct a new inner building and replace the outer facade stone work as before?

This way the elegant architecture of the premises could be retained.

Victoria Avenue has, as the article states, had much demolition and rebuilding in the past and this has not always been for the good. Anyone who agrees with my comments have time to place an objection to the planners - please do so - as soon as you can.

Harrogate needs some support in its time of need.

Barry Richardson