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Vibrant diversity replaced by dull uniformity in EH conservation drive

As its chief executive, Simon Thurley, points out, combating the 'parlous'state of conservation at local level is a keystone of English Heritage's current agenda (page 28). It is thanks to its conviction that conservation can drive regeneration that a terrace of Victorian shopfronts in a deprived-but-ripe-for-recovery quarter of east London has got itself a smart new look. The only catch is that the 'before' is more interesting than the 'after'.

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