Re: Re: The Western Quays

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It’s interesting to compare the attitude towards Georgian buildings in Ireland and the UK; 18th century stock over there is pretty much akin to how Victorian stock here is perceived – ten-a-penny and intrinsic to and characteristic of the built environment, especially urban areas – but nothing out of the ordinary.

By contrast Georgian buildings here seem to be considered so much more of value than their UK colleagues, being granted an almost servile level of respect. And with good reason in my view: they are our oldest buildings surviving on a mass scale, and the earliest stock of ‘modern’ times, that laid the foundations for how we build and live today.
Every country makes an effort to protect their oldest buildings regardless of how high they rank in the international hierarchy of ‘oldest civilisations’.

The approach to 18th century heritage here seems much more in line with the protectionist measures afforded Jacobean and Queen Anne buildings in Britain, as ought to be the case. We’ve damn all else prior to 1700, 1730 even.

I don’t like the term ‘blanket policy’ in that it suggests everything is worthy of retention which is not the case. But broadly in agreement with what jimg says, a tread-carefully approach ought to be taken, i.e. assume 18th /early 19th century buildings to be worthy of retention and protection, and work back from there taking into account the architecture of the structure in question, the amount of original fabric remaining, and context context context on a host of levels.

Whether we like it or not, there is a value in ‘oldness’ – whether it simply be the aesthetic of ‘traditional’ design, how buildings stand as reminders to how previous generations lived, or even how the process of aging itself generates a visual and often intangible allure. I think what makes your analogy to the judicial system somewhat incompatible with the built environment jimg is that unlike in criminal cases where it just may be possible for one to be found innocent with the passing time, buildings are pretty much gauranteed to be uncovered as whiter than white as time progresses 😉

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