THE CASE FOR IN SITU CONSERVATION
Throughout the recent LOCAL PLAN PROCESS, Tower Hamlets Council stated (without saying how and for what purpose) that the No.2 and No.5 gasholders were to be “retained and reused”. This statement was conveyed to St William Homes. Doubtless, St William Homes will claim that it is proposing to “retain and reuse the gasholders”, as required by Tower Hamlets Council.
EEWG commissioned The Regeneration Practice to undertake a FEASIBILITY STUDY
of the EEWG’s Local Plan proposals for the in situ conservation of the No.2 guide frame for public open space and the No.5 guide frame for housing. The study included the advantages of in situ conservation from scaffolding compared to off-site conservation, and estimates by two conservation engineers that the No.2 would cost £1.4 million and the No.5 would cost £3.6 million. Whereas St William Homes and others stated throughout the Local Plan process that the “retention” (i.e. dismantling for off-site conservation at an engineering works and re-erection, possibly on new foundations) would cost £10 million for each guide frame.
EEWG is now pleased to report that a retired engineer who was involved in the early planning for the dismantling of the gasholders, subsequently re-erected on new foundations at King’s Cross, has kindly produced a REPORT
, which supports the in situ conservation of the Bethnal Green gasholders. And an engineering historian who has made a study of historic London gasholders has kindly produced COMMENTS
, which also support in situ conservation of the Bethnal Green gasholders. Both independent experts have also explained why the No.2 guide frame should be kept open, and have sent their comments to St William Homes and Tower Hamlets Council.