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Building a legacy

5 May

Here is the eastern end of Jameson Street with the canopy of the now empty BHS store that used to shelter those waiting for buses. Where once there was a steady stream of cars, buses and people, the very arterial blood of any city, there is now yet another bland, pedestrianised desert. 

When a shop stops selling stuff and the doors close and the “for sale” signs spring up (redevelopment opportunity, of course) this is when the cover up operation starts. In swoops the council or whoever and City of Culture posters festoon the empty windows and doors. It all looks so professional, they’ve obviously had a lot of experience in this. So the empty BHS store is no longer a salutary lesson in the failure of modern business but has somehow become a bright blue advertisement for Culture and that is some sort of legacy I suppose.

Now I’ve gone on about this mosaic thing before and how there was a petition to get it some protection from any future wrecker’s ball. Well it seems there yet another petition to get it Grade 2 listed. As you simply cannot have too many petitions I signed that as well; you may like to do so it’s here. The mural now has a Twitter identity (@BhsMuralHull)  and I read recently of a young person who had a tatoo based on the mosaic. Now that is truly a lasting legacy.

The Weekend in Black and White is here.

Nice mural, shame about the building

10 Nov

They say if you stare this mural for long enough (in my case over thirty years on and off) you can see ‘Hull’ spelled out by the masts and rigging of the boats. I wouldn’t worry if you don’t see it.
This is the now empty BHS store and I’ve shown it before in better times. I’m showing it now because there’s a bit of a storm in a teacup brewing over getting the mural some protection from removal or demolition and so on. The powers that be have said that the 1960’s work by Alan Boyson “does not reach the standard for listing compared to other examples”. There’s another mural inside, which I don’t remember ever seeing, and that too was not listed. This decision has not met with universal approval and a petition has been set up to get the Council to do something about it. (You can sign it here should you wish.) It’s not difficult to discern the dark arts being employed here. If this does get listed then that building will be damn difficult to demolish without a lot of expense and I think that building really should come down if only to subtract one ugly thing from the planet. So I signed the petition; to lose the mural would be like losing an old friend, but I’ll sign one to remove the building as well if anyone were to put one up. Go figure.

Res per industriam prosperae

6 Aug
This monumental mosaic fronts what is now the BHS store on Prospect Street. Originally the Coop had a massive department store here but it changed hands and is now half the size, graphically disproving the latin inscription on the mosaic.