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Carlisle residents angry at Carleton clinic plans

News and Star readers reacted to news of the demolition of one historic building and the redevelopment of two others in Carlisle, after unsuccessful attempts to have them protected.

Plans for 157 homes on land at Cumwhinton Drive, Carleton Clinic will see the demolition of Westmorland House and the redevelopment of two other late 19th century buildings, Cumberland House and The Coppice.

Sean Reed, a resident of Parkland Village, tried to save Victorian architecture, by making an offer to have them registered as having historical significance, whether to Cumbria or the United Kingdom.

But Historic England and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport both ruled the buildings were not sufficiently historically significant to be a protected asset.

Mr Reed said it was “a real shame” and asked why the UK government did not want to protect its own historic buildings.

He believes that since the buildings previously served as the NHS mental health facility, they are his responsibility.

In addition to historic architecture, Mr Reed said the buildings have a story to tell of changing attitudes towards mental health: “There is a lot of history behind them, they were built for” private clients ”- the land nobility would refer their relatives (to the mental health facility).

“If these buildings are taken away, that social history is lost, but the report that came back from those on the list was that there were a lot of them all over the country.”

Residents also shared their anger on News and Star’s Facebook page over the proposals.

Lisa Tanner said: “This is another derelict building! ”

Tom Crotty followed: “This building has character and needs to be preserved. There are enough homes in Carlisle with more in the pipeline.

Shirley Wood added, “They’re going to tear down another big building for housing. What a waste to build toy houses crammed together with hardly any yard space. ”

Sandra Parker believes that people are unable to afford housing, saying: “It was mentioned that it would be turned into housing to buy. Not everyone is able to buy, what about more affordable rental properties? ”

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