Anna Aslanyan, a young writer and translator, has written a melancholy account of the seeming inevitability of the loss of the Whitechapel Bell Foundry before the forces of insensitive global development, smashing up the existing use without testing or checking whether it is in some form still viable, as is legally required, and converting it into an entirely empty form of consumerism. I like the way the piece is written. I am quoted as saying what I think – that at heart Historic England doesn’t care for the relics of East London industrial development. They are focussed on the building only at the expense of the historic importance of its use, which may be a weakness in the way that Historic England is constituted.
We await Robert Jenrick’s verdict. He should call it in as a test case. Otherwise, it will go down as this generation’s Euston Arch.