More Wakefield heritage sites at risk

heritage sites and historic architecture in Wakefield must be preserved for future generations.

Saturday, 11th November 2017, 5:00 am
Updated Monday, 11th December 2017, 4:20 pm
CONCERN: Wakefield Civic Societys own at risk list includes Clayton Hospital.

That’s the message from the leader of Wakefield Civic Society, after 14 landmarks across towns and villages were listed on the 2017 Heritage At Risk register, published by Historic England last month.

The archaeological sites, places of worship and historic buildings including Wakefield’s former Crown Court house, Pontefract Hermitage, Pontefract Castle and prehistoric settlement South Kirkby Camp were earmarked as ones that could be lost due to “neglect, decay or inappropriate development”. But they are not the only ones sparking concern.

Civic society president Kevin Trickett says the group has its own heritage at risk list, which includes Clayton Hospital, former Magistrates’ Court Tammy Hall and Wood Street Police Station.

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He said: “We add buildings to our list when they are of architectural or historic interest and keep a watching brief until their futures are secure. It doesn’t necessarily mean that they are in danger of collapse - or not just yet anyway.”

Mr Trickett said “newer” buildings in the city centre including the former BHS store, Fell House on George Street and the former Wakefield Express offices on Southgate could also be added if the group updated its list, “because of the impact empty buildings can have on the look of the city.

“We have to think about the legacy we are leaving for future generations,” he said.

Mr Trickett said the society was also working with Wakefield Council and Wakefield BID to try to improve the appearance of buildings of architectural or historic interest in the city’s Conservation Areas.