As expected this time last week, the DCMS have not listed Central Library. Meaning that the council have a window of half a decade in which to knock it down and replace it with soulless offices, chain cafes and thinly walled apartments. At least that’s what Brindleyplace (why no space!) mark two says to me.
“In offering the Government our expert advice, we examined all aspects of its architectural interest including: whether it fulfilled its brief; whether it was a particularly good example of a public library; how well it survives; how it compares to other listed buildings of a similar type; and how influential the building has been. In our view, these tests were met.”
Like the Rotunda before it, Central Library is a real building with real history and merit. Think of those buildings that have been senselessly destroyed before in the name of progress. We can’t let fashion spoil our history.
Is it a single issue we can rally around? Do we need a Save Central Library party — Mike Whitby is up for re-election to the council next year (2010), someone standing against him could prove disruptive — is that something we could do? Is it worth it? (EDIT: I’m not volunteering here, I don’t live in Harborne — where he’s a councillor for.)