Council to act on Grade II listed schoolhouse demolition

A developer faces a criminal prosecution after the demolition a section of a listed school designed by Erno Goldfinger on Brandlehow Road.


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Mechanical diggers pulled down most of the roof, two external walls and a number of internal walls without consent from the council.

Deputy planning applications chairman Piers McCausland said:

"The scale of destruction went way beyond the limited alterations works agreed for the property. The plan was always to retain the integrity of the building by keeping its roof and re-using materials including facing bricks and window frames.

"Where a property owner appears to flout listed building controls in this way the council will likely prosecute those responsible."

The planning applications committee (February 8) said the owner should be prosecuted and a notice issue to secure the reinstatement of the building's historic fabric.

Who was Erno Goldfinger? A Hungarian-born architect 1902 -1987 and a key member of the architectural modern movement. Author Ian Fleming was a neighbour of Goldfinger and due to his dislike of the design of the house (and the demolition of the previous Victorian properties) prompted him to name the James Bond adversary and villain Auric Goldfinger after Ernő. Goldfinger consulted his lawyers when the book was published in 1959 (which prompted Fleming to threaten to rename the character 'Goldprick') but eventually decided not to sue; Fleming's publishers agreed to pay his costs and gave him six free copies of the book.

March 3, 2007