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CABE weighs in to Queensgate Market row

CABE has waded into the furore surrounding the future of Huddersfield’s Grade II-listed 1972 Queensgate Market.

The design watchdog claimed proposals by Leslie Jones Architects to redevelop the area around the market, which would include the partial demolition of the concrete hall, were ‘crude and inelegant’ and should not be approved.

The commission has become the latest in a line of critics to pan the plans and follows outbursts from the Twentieth Century Society and local campaign group Huddersfield Gem – both of which are particularly concerned about the proposed loss of eight of the hall’s 21 rare hyperbolic paraboloid roof-support structures.

CABE said: ‘We are concerned that the proposal is not of sufficient quality to bring the intended benefits to this part of Huddersfield.

‘While we applaud the ambition to relocate, raise and extend the existing market hall, we are not convinced from the information provided that this is a feasible proposition.’

Meanwhile, English Heritage (EH), which also attacked the planning application during the summer, appears to have backtracked. In August EH said the scheme had ‘neither been fully explained nor justified'.

However, in a letter seen by the AJ, the body has confirmed it was ‘satisfied there [was] potential to refine the outline development proposal into one that would be appropriate’.

Intriguingly, rumours continue to circulate that the hall could be upgraded from Grade II listing to Grade II* – although the Department of Culture, Media and Sport said it had no knowledge of such a move.

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