Historic England (2)

It has just come to my attention that Historic England was aware of the proposal to develop the Whitechapel Bell Foundry by United Kingdom Historic Building Preservation Trust, a leading preservation charity with a good track record in preserving working buildings, as at Middleport Pottery in Burslem, in advance of submitting their evidence to Tower Hamlets in support of the rival scheme drawn up by a New York property developer, which turns the bell foundry into a boutique hotel. This raises questions about both due process and how they arrived at their judgment. Did they think the UKHBT proposal not viable ? Did they really think it better to turn a working foundry into a hotel, rather preserve it as is, as a foundry ? Who prepared the evidence ? And did any money pass hands, as has been rumoured, in payments to Historic England and/or its advisors in advance of their advice which led them directly or indirectly to support the property developer’s scheme ?

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