Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby notjim » Mon May 12, 2008 9:33 pm

like this?

Image
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby ctesiphon » Mon May 12, 2008 9:37 pm

Heh- I was just thinking of Hugh Ferriss and Antonio Sant'Elia, but Metropolis is better yet!

(PS Not disparaging the idea, BTH- if the land stays in service, something like your suggestion could make a big difference, and the fall from south to north has potential for changes of level etc. [though the last thing we need is another BTs car park].)
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby BTH » Mon May 12, 2008 9:41 pm

gunter wrote:possibly the most bizarre aspect of the proposal isn't the cluster of glass towers, but the elevation treatment to Thomas Street.


Regarding the latest De Blacam & Meagher proposal - what is going on there!? Bizarre isn't the word for that street elevation and going for the mega towers again (even if chopped back a bit) seems a bit crazy when they were so comprehensively rejected the last time round.
In honesty I actually think the site could handle the high rises with the Guinness sites and the digital hub site also particularly suitable to create a genuine cluster of tall buildings within a strongly defined area. The approach of clustering taken here is so much more dynamic and interesting than the usual agglomeration of mid rise lumps with their "landmark" tower popping up as proposed at Heuston Gate and being built over at the Point. A high rise district interspersed with the historic structures of the Guinness site and the digital hub could be a very interesting piece of city - I'm thinking a bit like a minature version of parts of Manhattan or Chicago - and I cant really think of a better place for it to happen than here since the Docklands are already lost to the march of the mid rise...
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby BTH » Mon May 12, 2008 9:49 pm

Notjim, ctesiphon - you've read my mind! ;-)

I actually think it could be a runner, but I'd worry that since Diageo will ultimately run this site as their tourist trap "GuinnessWorld" they'd end up charging people to walk through!
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby GrahamH » Fri May 16, 2008 11:44 pm

The decision was exactly how imagined it would be (he says after the event) - centralising around the existing concentrated core of brewing/manufacturing facilities to the south of James's Street and ditching the rest.

Nonetheless I would imagine there are many opportunites in the reordering for the creation of a new street or right of way to the river from James's Street, remembering that the upheavals will no doubt also affect the retained operations and their buildings in some shape or form. DCC could also make new applications for the retained Guinness site dependant on a right of way being opened. In any event I would imagine it to be in Guinness's interests to do so - they may well open a form of factory tour as part of the scheme, bussed over from Storehouse, while the desirability of sites along the quays would be much boosted by improved permeability. Many possibilities.


Apologies if the below overlaps with the Dutch Billy thread - hard to know which one to drop it into...

Moving back eastwards, one of the most fascinating buildings on Thomas Street is Foley's Pharmacy at No. 55, almost opposite SS. Augustine and John.
Instantly you can tell there's something 'up' :)

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What makes it so important, and as far as I'm aware completely unique on Thomas Street, is its retention of extremely early Georgian brickwork and original small window opes. It is certainly the oldest facade to survive in its original condition without major alteration such as render or paint additions, and probably the oldest full stop.

What makes it of special interest is the three layers to the building from different periods: an early 18th century lower facade and substructure, a mid-19th century third floor addition and two-over-two sash windows (in themselves relatively uncommon), and an early 20th century shopfront. Indeed it would appear even the attic addition was later refaced in red rather than yellow stock brick.

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It's entirely possible this building is a Dutch Billy with its gable chopped off and built up, and if so would probably make its facade one of the best, if not the best surviving in the entire city.

Here is its roof form to the rear; the 19th century additions give it a deceptively substantial modern appearance.

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However what makes this property of outstanding significance in the wider city is its breathtaking array of early sash windows to the side elevation. Just look at those glazing bars!

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Absolutely incredible survivors. The significance of such an array of early sashes cannot be underestimated.

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Not to mention early crown glass. This can all easily be seen from the adjacent alleyway.

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Diminutive little four-over-four windows also survive abutting the neighbouring building over the alley (visible above).

It can be difficult to think of this as a Dutch Billy given the 'modern' array of windows to this side elevation, however the adjoining plot (occupied by the white building in the first picture) was only built over a wide laneway - even roadway - in the 19th century. The right of way was maintained as a narrow alleyway characteristic of Thomas Street. So this was orginally a more significant elevation for the house.

Without question one of the most important domestic-scale buildings to the west of the city.


Another possible candidate for Billy status is this wonderful two-bay curiosity a little further east at the juntion with Meath Street.

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Oooh the possibilites...

Alas around the back is so consumed with modern housing and apartments that it's impossible to view the rear on location. However this aerial perspective gives a vague idea of what's going on behind. There appears to be a single window/ope of sorts to the centre of the top floor. The position of the roof halfway between the windows and parapet top is suggestive of the building being of two storeys originally.

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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby gunter » Tue May 20, 2008 5:13 pm

Graham: That cute little pharmacy at 55 Thomas Street, always looked like a former 'Dutch Billy' to me because of the low floor to ceiling heights and the small equal size of the windows on first and second floor, but, when they rebuilt the top storey, (which was only 5 or 6 years ago) they followed old 19th century photographs that showed a fourth floor with a flat parapet and the same window arrangement here as on the floors below.

Oddly enough, the closer you get into the original city centre, the less sure you can be that the houses were 'Dutch Billys'. We see this in the Joseph Tudor print of College Green (what thread was that on?) that the 'Billys' were all concentrated down at the College end of the street and older, smaller, simpler, triangular gabled houses predominated further west towards the medieval city. A good many, centrally located, houses probably skipped the whole 'Billy' thing and went straight from 17th century triangular gable to flat parapet Georgian by the second half of the 18th century. The same is true of many houses on the arterial routes into town, like anything that shows up on Speed's map of 1610. It's on the new streets, laid out after the 1670s, and for the bones of half a century, or more, that 'Billys' were the only show in town.

I remember being perplexed by a memorial of a deed to a house on Francis Street, which described the property as the house commonly known as 'The Dutch House' before I realized that Francis Street is shown fully developed on Speed's map and a new 'Dutch Billy' here would have stood out very prominantly fully meriting this local label. On the other hand, it could have been just that some Dutch man lived in it!.

Sorry, I probably should have posted this on the 'Dutch Billy' thread.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby Devin » Tue May 20, 2008 6:17 pm

GrahamH wrote:Image

What makes it so important, and as far as I'm aware completely unique on Thomas Street, is its retention of extremely early Georgian brickwork and original small window opes. It is certainly the oldest facade to survive in its original condition without major alteration such as render or paint additions, and probably the oldest full stop.

What makes it of special interest is the three layers to the building from different periods: an early 18th century lower facade and substructure, a mid-19th century third floor addition and two-over-two sash windows (in themselves relatively uncommon), and an early 20th century shopfront. Indeed it would appear even the attic addition was later refaced in red rather than yellow stock brick.
The top floor was only added in 2006.

And it was badly done. They insisted on bringing it up to the height of the circa 1800 building next door, resulting in awkward proportions. The top storey should have been smaller. Gunter, are you sure about the 19th century photographs. I remember the planning application and I don't remember seeing any. I agree that many of the remaining early houses around the city were more likely to have been plain gable-fronted houses - much as we'd like to fantasise that they were curvilinear - because you always see more plain ones in the old prints, and of course Speed's, where they are all plain.

The windows down the side lane are great.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby gunter » Tue May 20, 2008 7:53 pm

Devin wrote:The top floor was only added in 2006. They insisted on bringing it up to the height of the circa 1800 building next door, resulting in awkward proportions. The top storey should have been smaller. Gunter, are you sure about the 19th century photographs. I remember the planning application and I don't remember seeing any.



Devin: There was a exhibition of old photographs of Mullinahack and adjacent areas of Thomas St. and John's Lane in the Photographic Centre in Temple Bar about five years ago (maybe less) and there was at least one, and possibly two, shots of this part of Thomas Street. From memory, they showed this house with a common parapet height to next door and three more windows pretty much as they rebuilt it. I remember it because I had always harboured notions that it was a Dutch Billy and I was disappointed that the planning application was just for another storey.

All the old photographs of High street and Patrick Street are the same, they all show tall, not particularly well proportioned, Georgian type houses where you'd half expect to see much more interesting stuff.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby Devin » Tue May 20, 2008 9:07 pm

Ah yes, got in briefly to see that exhibition. I just remember there were loads of unusual photos of parts of the city you don't usually see in old photos, and I said I would have to come back for a better perusal then of course it was gone next time I looked!

Patrick Street never seems to have had any great quality from what you can see in old photos. High Street was perhaps a bit better from what I've seen. There was a good uniform early 19th century 4-storey terrace in front of St. Audoen's (CoI) Church. The ground & 1st floors of the east-most house of this terrace is still standing as Murphy's pram shop (though got it permission for demolition and replacement with a 5-storey glazed building a few yrs. ago).
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby gunter » Thu May 22, 2008 5:42 pm

What's the story with this medieval wall?

What we see (through the archway of the Chadwick's gate) is obviously the inside of a substantial medieval? structure with a line of corbels to carrry floor, or roof beams and several bricked up window opes.

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I think there was some kind of monastry, or hospital, dedicated to St. John the Baptist, (which somehow was apparently not connected to the Knights Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem, up at Kilmainham) located somewhere around the start of Thomas Street, outside Newgate (Cornmarket).

Presumably this wall is a remnant of that monastry / hospital, but which part? Was it part of the church, or the refectory, or some other building. If this wall survived because it just got incorporated into a party wall between later houses, and then came back into view with the creation of the builder's yard (Dublin Saw Mills) in the early 19th century, have the other houses on the street been surveyed to ascertain if there are other medieval remains hidden in the fabric of those house walls?

Presumably also the pub to the right of the Chadwick's gate incorporates the 'outer' face of this wall, possibly with blocked up mullion windows, or other dateble architectural features.

Does anyone know if DCC, or anyone else, is on top of this situation? The recent planning application that Devin gave notice of earlier in this thread, is just three, or four houses west of this wall. You'd like to think that warning lights are flashing somewhere!

Chadwick's wouldn't be the most conscientious of heritage custodians, they bulldozed the oldest Presbiterian church in Dublin, in the late 80s or early 90s, if I recall.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby GrahamH » Fri May 23, 2008 9:18 am

Yes, and I recall a reference to there being part of a graveyard under there too. Again the aerial view (link below) comes in very handy here - you can see the extent of the wall and structures behind. This exactly shaped wall/building is also marked on Rocque's map of 1756.

http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCC&cp=swqd09gg96rz&style=o&lvl=2&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&scene=29507579&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&encType=1


Just on the pharmacy building again at No. 55, I don't quite understand the reasoning about the top storey. I presume this is the 19th century photograph you refer to, gunter, dated 1893.

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Even though this shows it as being built up, it was of course very typical by that time for most gables to have been replaced on prominent streets. And clearly something had been replaced, or at the very least subtantially raised, in the 19th century using yellow brick which is still visible along the bottom and the right-hand side of the recent red brick rebuild.

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Also I'm glad to note (after counting bricks :o) that the windows to the side elevation are precisely the same size as those of the front, so at least we know the side is contemporaneous with the front, and vice versa. Whereas by no means confirming this was a Billy, there's every possibility that it was. Even being an early or just particularly old-fashioned Georgian makes it of great interest.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby gunter » Fri May 23, 2008 11:05 am

Graham: You're quite right there about the Pharmacy, it could have been a 'Billy' with the top storey replaced. I missed the point that the black and white photograph didn't discriminate between the yellow brick top and the red brick below. The window proportions and the spacing are too perfect for it not to have been a 'Billy'.

If you put this one together with 20 Thomas St, 25 Aungier St. and one I spotted today on Bolton Street, the features, proportions and scale are almost identical.

That's sub-group no. 1 sorted.

We still have a problem that the side elevation, even with the right window proportions, is constructed in yellow brick, or appears to be, behind all the grime. I went down there quite late last night to take a look and there was a horse standing in the lane! very atmospheric.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby GrahamH » Fri May 23, 2008 1:29 pm

:)

Yes it can be a bit like the Guinness Christmas ad down there at times - you often encounter horses silhouetted with their breath catching in the light down there...

Yes indeed the side elevation is of yellow brick, but it would appear to be orginal yellow brick as you can see the top storey was clearly replaced!

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Wouldn't you love to have a snoop around inside. The owners/tenants appear to be aware of the value of their building at least - so the history books on display in the window amongst vitamin tablets and photo processing would have you believe anyway.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby gunter » Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:43 pm

It looks like this scheme for the Digital Hub has withered on the vine. It was sent for Additional Information on 5th December '07, so the six months should have been up yesterday and there was no record of any submission today!

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In general, developers usually consider an AI request to be the next best think to Planning Permission, so you don't often see a scheme drop off the screen when it's got that far.

I'm not sorry to see the back of it, the treatment of the frontage to Thomas Street was indefensible, and then there's the issue of nos. 20 and 21.

What are the chances of seeing a new scheme that restores the streetscape here?

Isn't delusion is so much nicer than reality?
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby ctesiphon » Fri Jun 06, 2008 8:17 am

gunter wrote:It looks like this scheme for the Digital Hub has withered on the vine. It was sent for Additional Information on 5th December '07, so the six months should have been up yesterday and there was no record of any submission today!


The christmas planning hiatus wouldn't have an effect on that timeline, I presume? Let's hope not!
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby 71gray » Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:16 pm

Hi, I haven’t posted before, but thought considering the tread you may be interested in seeing the new planning application and some photos sent recently to the corpo for the frawleys site. Hope the links work.


Image

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And a few of the images they have drawn up,

Current view
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New View after development
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Sorry about the quality of the shots, they were taken with my phone. I have a few more shots taken with my camera if anyone is interested in seeing them and a copy of most of the conservation and impact assessment for the site.

Personally I live locally and think this proposal its a bit of a disaster and if it proceeds it will fundamentally alter the character of the street.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby aj » Tue Jun 17, 2008 10:07 pm

I really dispair at this stage. Why does no one in authority give a shit about conservation of the the historic fabric of this city !
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby JoePublic » Tue Jun 17, 2008 10:18 pm

Good lord. If that gets through, I'm emigrating.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby gunter » Tue Jun 17, 2008 10:22 pm

Where do you start with this? How do you begin to explain?

Are there people walking round with rocks in their heads?
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby Devin » Tue Jun 17, 2008 10:43 pm

To coin a few phrases:

+1

Dazed & confused

Vote No (but Yes in the next Europe treaty)
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby Devin » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:53 pm

I know the counter argument to opposition to this Frawley's proposal is: 'Well these buildings are just going to rot away otherwise' and 'I'm not going to restore them just for you to look at', but the developer is Liam Carroll and you can't help feel that, given all the shite he foisted on us in the '90s, he should actually make a gesture to the city by repairing some historic buildings that wouldn't be profitable but would be very rewarding in terms of civic contribution to the city because of their location near St. Catherine's Church and on Thomas Street which is of great historic interest and character. And he's one who could actually do that because he's got more money than he knows what to do with it, what with his corpoate takeovers and site assemblys.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby aj » Thu Jun 19, 2008 11:14 pm

is it too late to get these buildings added to the list of protected structures?
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby lunasa » Sat Jun 21, 2008 12:01 pm

No, no, no and may I add again, no!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Bloody tasteless idiots.
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby GP » Mon Jun 23, 2008 7:04 am

I did a survey on Hanbury Lane about 7 years ago. There was a small low basement area and the owner told me that just under the floor was the floor of a priory. Certainly there was much older stonework. What can anyone tell about the archaeology of this site?
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Re: Thomas Street & James Street, Dublin!

Postby gunter » Mon Jun 23, 2008 7:28 pm

GP: There is a site located between Earl Street South and Hanbury Lane that had planning permission for a small housing scheme about 1992, or so, and when the builder started digging his foundations, a medieval tiled floor turned up. I didn't see it myself, but I heard about it when I was working for FAS in a office next door.

To the best of my knowledge the City Archaeologist (possibly then Andy Halpin) stopped all work on site. The story at the time was that the builder agreed to walk away if he was given a comparable site to develop by Dublin Corporation.

As far as I know, the gates to the site (on Earl St. South) have never been opened since. I think the general view was that the medieval tiling belonged to one on the ancilliary buildings of St. Thomas's Court, which was a one of the monasteries on the outskirts of the city, with it's church being the predecessor of the present St. Catherine's Church on Thomas Street. There's a Tuder era characteristic bird's eye view of it in McCullough's book (I think) and also an outline in Speed's map of 1610.

I hadn't heard of the basement you refer to, it sounds very interesting!

I don't want to keep harping on about the differences between the appreciation of heritage in Dublin and the appreciation of heritage everywhere else, but I did a bit of delving into another monastic order, the Order of the Knights Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem, whose Irish headquarters was in Kilmainham and found the record to be essentially blank. There are a couple of written descriptions from medieval times, an inventory from the time of the dissolution, some other passing references and one map / graphic representation in the Down's survey of 1650 and that's it.

When I searched the record of the corresponding house in London, which was at Clerkenwell and which is almost equally bereft of extant built remains, I found that English Heritage and just completed a 20 year programme of excavations and archaeological investigation at the site and had published an impressive volume as a record of their findings.

But then again your medieval tiles are safe under the ground and we'd only be opening a can of worms if we went off investigating the likes of that.
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