As demolition of the Coventry Cross gets underway without complying with the Council’s own conditions for removal, the Coventry Society asks: “Why are developers being allowed to rule the roost when it comes to the care of our heritage assets?”
Of course we were disappointed to see planners bulldoze through the removal of the Cross at November’s planning meeting, at the behest of developer Shearer. What’s more Historic England’s observations were treated with impunity and disregarded. Now we see the dismantling of the Cross in process without the relevant conditions being followed.
These were the planning conditions agreed at the meeting in November:
“3. The proposed development shall proceed in full accordance with the following details to be submitted to and approved in writing by the local planning authority:
“a) a construction management plan and phasing programme of works, which shall include full details of timescales for dismantling and relocation of the Coventry Cross;
“b) a method statement detailing how the Cross structure will be dismantled, how surrounding paving materials will be protected during this process, and details of the materials to be used to repair the space left by the Cross’ removal;
“c) a method statement detailing how the Cross structure will be relocated within its new position on Ironmonger Row;
“d) details for a programme of public art within the space left by the Cross.
“All details shall be carried out as approved.”
In view of a blatant disregard of planning procedures we call on the Council’s Chief Executive to order an immediate enquiry into the methods being adopted by the Planning Department. In the meantime we also ask that work be halted until the planning conditions have been met.