Unsupported browser

For a better experience please update your browser to its latest version.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Hodge refuses to list Robin Hood Gardens

  • Comment

Calls to have the Smithsons' Robin Hood Gardens estate in East London listed have failed.

Architecture Minister Margaret Hodge said she was in complete agreement with English Heritage that the 210-home concrete housing estate in Tower Hamlets – built between 1966 and 1972 – was not a fit place for people to live.

Although many famous architectural names had thrown their weight behind the listing bid in an attempt to save the building from demolition by English Partnerships, Hodge was not swayed by claims that the building was ‘innovative in terms of the streets in the air’.

However the minster admitted the decision had been hard.

She said: ‘This has been a tough and finely balanced case which has rightly been considered openly and with great care. I have received expert advice and opinion from a number of sources and was shown round the estate a few days ago to see it for myself, both inside and out.

She added: ‘The architects' brief was to design a place fit for people to live, of course. But in that respect, I agree with my expert advisors English Heritage, that it simply doesn't work.

‘When functional failures are fundamental, it raises questions about the architectural performance of the building and thus its claims to special interest. As well as this, features such as the stairwells and the boundary wall demonstrate the "bleakness of design" that the experts have highlighted.

Hodge concluded: ‘Although I accept that it was designed by distinguished architects, I do not think that their reputation outweighs the evidence that Robin Hood Gardens was not innovative in terms of the "streets-in-the-air" concept and it is not fit for purpose.’

It is unclear whether a legal challenge will be made against the decision.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.

Related Jobs

AJ Jobs