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Gallowgate architects promise to preserve SJP views but they once suggested boarding up the Tyne!

2 years ago

The fight goes on to try and stop the Strawberry Place development, a project on land once owned by Newcastle United which will prevent any future expansion of St James Park (see details of how, like hundreds of other Newcastle fans have done, you can still register your own objection below).

Mike Ashley has turned a personal profit by buying the land off the football club and then selling it on to developers to make a few million for himself.

Whilst every other Premier League club is trying to increase the number of fans they can get into their stadiums, Mike Ashley is doing his best to ensure St James Park will never have an increased capacity, even if one day he does sell to ambitious new owners.

Another concern with the development is that it will totally ruin the Newcastle city centre skyline and the views of St James Park that we see now.

Interesting then to see the Strawberry Place architects (Ryder Architecture) quoted in the Chronicle:

In new documents submitted this week, Ryder Architecture states that the height of the buildings “has been designed and tested to ensure that they sit comfortably with the adjacent buildings and within the wider context”.

They add: “The footprints of the new buildings have been located to preserve key views to the Gallowgate stand of St James’ Park from both the head of St James’ Boulevard and the Chinese Gate.”

All of that sounds professional but in the 60s the same firm (then known as Ryder & Yates) proposed boarding over the River Tyne for T Dan Smith because it was an eyesore. Can you imagine? (***Thanks to one of our avid readers for the tip-off to this one..)

If Burns’ plans for a city of elevated pedestrian walkways were ambitious, Ryder & Yates’ proposal for the regeneration of the Quayside area was audacious. As the hub of Newcastle’s industry, the Quayside enjoyed over a century of prosperity but by the time T. Dan Smith was in office it was deeply derelict and left reeling from years of post-war deindustrialisation and neglect. Smith turned to the trusted Ryder & Yates to figure out how to revitalise the area and—possibly inspired by Wilfred Burns’ love of pedestrian decks—came up with the Tyne Deck plan.

Ryder & Yates proposed decking over the River Tyne, from one side to the other, and building a sprawling conference centre complex on top. Few can deny the sheer audacity of this plan. It’s doubtful whether even the most radical members of Burns’ planning team would have countenanced the idea, but its very conception captures the utopian mood of the 1960s planning scene in Newcastle.


Nothing changes – local architects are still happy to kill our heritage on behalf of the council!

(From Monday’s article ‘Add your objection today against Gallowgate development that stops St James Park ever expanding’)

We have done a short step by step guide detailing how to get to where you need to, so you can object and comment (it is simple and will only take you a few minutes. This probably makes it sound more complicated than it actually is but thought worth detailing step by step just in case…).

A quick step by step guide to objecting:

Click HERE to go to Newcastle City Council planning page.

Then second option down is ‘Search by reference number’, click that and then enter 2019/0879/01/DET to take you direct to the SJP/Gallowgate planning application.

At the top of that page click ‘Register’ and you enter name, address and password, then an email is sent for you to click to confirm you are registered and now able to comment/object.

Log-in using your email and password, then search once again using 2019/0879/01/DET and then click ‘Commenter type’ and choose ‘Member of the public’

Then click ‘Object’ and leave your comment below that, explaining why you don’t want the development to go ahead.


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