Whitechapel Bell Foundry (29)

The decision of Robert Jenrick to call in planning permission for the Whitechapel Bell Foundry will, I assume, place Historic England in an odd and potentially indefensible position of being required to publicly account for why they have consistently supported the redevelopment and effective destruction of such a historically important and valuable site.

After a bit of judicious digging, it has become clear to me that when this was first discussed by the London Advisory Committee, one of the officers argued that since it was not originally designed as a Foundry (in 1744), it was hard for them to argue for its retention as a Foundry. Isn’t this view going to look faintly ludicrous in court ? It’s been Britain’s – and, indeed, the world’s – most important Bell Foundry for over 250 years, a piece of industrial heritage of incomparable historic importance. But Historic England whose job it is to defend the heritage have never even discussed the issue at a meeting with their Commissioners, although it is hard to find this out because they don’t publish their minutes.

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4 thoughts on “Whitechapel Bell Foundry (29)

  1. I feel there are Petards being readied all over the land!
    However, examining whether that was quite the correct idiom, I took the trouble to look up the correct definition of a Petard. It seems that this was originally an “exceedingly dangerous explosive device, comprised of a brass or iron bell-shaped device filled with gunpowder “. How very appropriate.

  2. jeremy dixon says:

    Dear Charles, you must already know of our favourite news rag’s hugely welcome article today in support of your case for the Bell Foundry. All is forgiven as to the reputation of the Daily Mail, see page 40 – a terrific support for the case for retention and a public enquiry, list of supporters etc. Interesting reference to Prince Charles’s
    ‘Re-Form Heritage’ charity with photo of Charles striking the bell named after him and cast in the foundry. You couldn’t ask for
    more. Has this been covered in any other
    paper?
    Love to all,

    Jeremy x

    Sent from my iPhone

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