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Petitioning Gwynedd County Council GWYNEDD CHIEF PLANNING OFFICER

GWYNEDD COUNCIL: DON'T LET BANGOR'S RAILWAY INSTITUTE BUILDING BE DEMOLISHED.

The City of Bangor's historic Railway Institute building, in Euston Road, is in imminent danger of being demolished, to make way for student accommodation. Earlier this year (2015) the railway club membership, for a variety of reasons, sold the BRI (as it is colloquially referred to), with a view to moving to different premises in Sackville Road (the old clinic.) The new owners, Kingscrown Properties Ltd., of Stockport, have submitted plans to Gwynedd Council, which involve demolishing the BRI building and constructing accommodation for students on the site. (Planning Ref.: C15/0533/11/LL.) This must not be allowed to happen to this important piece of Bangor's fast-disappearing architectural heritage. Constructed by the London & North Western Railway in 1898, with a substantial extension added in 1905, it was purpose-built to accommodate the social, cultural and educational needs of its employees, many of whom lived in the adjacent streets and terraces. In fact, several current railway employees still live in the area, which is primarily residential. Although looking somewhat neglected, the building remains an attractive and historically-important piece of local (and national) architecture. It is probably one of the few remaining (quite possibly the last) examples of a purpose-built Victorian/Edwardian Railway Institute in Wales and the rest of the UK. To demolish such an architectural asset to satisfy a property developer's desire for short-term profit, with no long-term benefit to the local community, would be a tragedy. We urge Gwynedd Council to make any planning permissions that may be granted to be conditional on retaining the external structure and facades, with any demolition confined to interior alterations. This has been successfully achieved with the old British Hotel in the High Street, Garth School, and numerous redundant chapels, to name but a few examples.
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  • Gwynedd County Council
    GWYNEDD CHIEF PLANNING OFFICER

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