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SALFORD DIRTY OLD TOWN GASWORKS DEMOLITION BEGINS
 

Star date: 25th October 2018

DEMOLITION OF EWAN MACCOLL'S DIRTY OLD TOWN GAS HOLDERS STARTS

'I found my love by the gasworks croft...'

A demolition team has now begun demolishing the Salford gas holders made world famous by Ewan MacColl in his anthem Dirty Old Town. Despite a petition and events by the structures to try and save them, the National Grid has pressed on with its plans, and huge cranes are now in place dismantling the landmark.

Full details here...


Salford Dirty Old Town Gasworks demolition begins Salford Dirty Old Town Gasworks demolition begins Salford Dirty Old Town Gasworks demolition begins
Salford Dirty Old Town Gasworks demolition begins Salford Dirty Old Town Gasworks demolition begins
click image to enlarge

Around 18 months ago, when Ewan MacColl's wife, Peggy Seeger, became aware that the Salford gas holders made world famous in his Dirty Old Town anthem were to be demolished, she echoed the horror that many people in the community felt...*

"The gasworks skeleton, rusty or not, is magnificent" she told the Salford Star "If we didn't live in a land-grabbing commercial system, the gasworks scaffolding could have been strengthened and turned into latticework for climbing plants.

"The internal spaces could hold a maze, a secret garden, a cafe, trees…fountains… secret spaces to discover...somewhere unlike anywhere in the world" she added "Good for the environment and Salford's fresh air, and a magic place for children of any age..."

Unfortunately, due to the lack of imagination of anyone in authority, her words fell on deaf ears. While other cities have preserved their gas holders and turned them into parks and flats, Salford City Council gave lip-service to the heritage, announcing that it would do a 'project' around the remaining gasworks wall – even though the wall was never mentioned in the MacColl song (The Pogues changed the words!).

In May this year, as workmen moved onto the Liverpool Street site, there was a petition urging the National Grid to change its mind, while there were two protests with musicians playing Dirty Old Town by the side of the structures.

"Improvements and modernisation in technology for storing gas mean individual gas holders haven't been used for many years" a spokesperson for the National Grid told the Salford Star "As the Salford gas holder is no longer required, the structure is being dismantled. This is the first step in making redundant brownfield land available for future use.

"We recognise the historic interest in the Salford gasholder and are working closely with stakeholders, including Salford Council and local community groups, to leave an engaging legacy that celebrates its role over the years" they added.

The famous locally listed gas holders can now be filed in the dustbin of heritage history along with the Salford Quays cranes, the Black Horse pub, Ye Olde Nelson pub and many other former landmarks in a city that refuses to recognise its past...


Peggy Seeger is appearing tonight at Band On The Wall

* For a full background see previous Salford Star articles...

Salford Dirty Old Town Gasworks To Be Demolished As Peggy Seeger Slates 'Land Grabbers' – click here

Dirty Old Town Performed Near Salford Gasworks In Demolition Protest – click here

Demolition Team Moves In On Salford Gasworks – click here

National Grid Will Not Re-Think Demolition of Gasworks – click here

Tony Easom wrote
at 20:53:50 on 06 December 2018
We are having another Dirty Old Town sing song near the gas works at The Union Tavern Pub on Liverpool Street Sunday 16th December 1pm to 4pm. We may go outside to the gas works weather permitting. Its an open mic entertainment at this child friendly pub and the land lord, Carl has said he will provide some snacks. I met up with Peggy Seeger at the Band on The Wall recently,she is thrilled with what we are trying to do in regards to starting a Ewan MacColl song festival along these lines. Hope you can all join us. Tony and Lisa Easom
 
Philip Giuseppe Rossi, The Broadwalk ... wrote
at 07:50:40 on 28 October 2018
Look, we all know how important The Gasworks are to us Salford folk. After all, they were immortalised by a SALFORD "LEGEND" who waited for his girl by the Gasworks Wall, before going for a "Knee Trembler" on the Canal Bank, and then pissing off to The Big Smoke to live the dream and sing duff old songs in a folk club, where in his own "mannered" way he would sit on a reversed stool, and then warble some maudlin old cobblers, with one of his fingers in his ear. Just get rid of The Gasworks, they're AN eyesore. And build an Aldi or a Tesco's in its place. Maybe even an ASDA ... Incidentally, I cycle down the canal frequently, and coming up from Eccles as you go towards Chester Rd in Stretford, just before Chester Rd and to your left there is als a Crappy Old Gasworks. Yes, and it's also an eyesore and should be torn down IMMEDIATELY and in its place there should be a Retail Park with a Carpet World erected there. It's the Future. It's the way that it should be. It's progress and it's GOOD!
 
Alice wrote
at 08:08:42 on 27 October 2018
I expect the site will be offered for another soulless block of unaffordable apartments. With some imagination and discussion with creative architects, this historic structure could have become a unique landmark for Salford. I wonder if any of the Planning Dept had a trip to see the various designs for gasworks in London. These are different and creative. This gasworks has a very special significance for people of Salford and this fact should have been considered in the planning decisions. It would have been so good for Salford to be proud of a creative design which remembered its emotional story as well as its historic value.
 
Bob the regular wrote
at 07:31:06 on 26 October 2018
I was down London the other week and saw the job they have done there converting the old gasholders. I only saw it by accident and the lads I was with wanted to get back, so I couldn't go in the show flat and have a good nosey. They look great, all credit to the people who thought it out. I think if they had done the same here ,they could perhaps got grants ect, and I have good feeling they would have made a lot of money with them as this is the sort of thing people like.Ah well.
 
ian c wrote
at 07:30:26 on 26 October 2018
google gasholders london and see what could have been done
 
Big Fish wrote
at 18:36:51 on 25 October 2018
Hardly a surprise with Derek Antrobus at the helm..there's more culture in a yogurt pot
 
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