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UK Dockyards Society welcomes news Victoria and Albert Rows will be saved

A UK historical group has applauded Government’s decision to save West End housing formerly slated for demolition.

The announcement that Victoria and Albert Rows would be spared the wrecking ball was applauded by the National Dockyards Society, which six months ago appealed for the preservation of the 150-year-old homes.

A West End Development Corporation project to replace them with 100 new housing units was drastically scaled back, Public Works Minister Trevor Moniz announced last week.

The buildings will be restored “in due course”.

NDS secretary Ann Coats wrote a letter to

The Royal Gazette in response to Mr Moniz’s announcement.

She described it as “a resounding pledge” of Government’s commitment to “a new duty of care for the built environment”.

And she said it vindicated the Development Applications Board’s December 2011 rejection of the housing plan.

The NDS also hopes to see the Dockyard’s victualling storehouses listed and preserved as historical sites, as well as Malabar House.

Development in the area is governed under the 2008 Bermuda Plan, which protects historic buildings.

The NDS has further recommended that “no interventions” be made to alter the character of the Albert and Victoria Rows.

She said that Wedco — originally tasked with the housing project — should set a conservation plan based on “best international heritage practice”.

“Sustainable renovation of Albert and Victoria Rows will create tradesmen’s jobs and train young people in essential crafts such as applying lime mortar, which will be transferable elsewhere in Bermuda,” Ms Coats wrote.

“A set percentage of Wedco’s rental income should be invested and ring-fenced for refurbishment, ongoing repairs and maintenance expenditure of its listed buildings.

“That would address the issue of no capital available to protect built heritage assets.”

She continued: “Bermuda’s new government is showing that in the 21st century heritage-led regeneration can have positive sustainable and economic value.”

Useful website: www.planning.gov.bm.

Albert Row on Cochrane Road, Ireland Island South.

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Published January 29, 2013 at 8:00 am (Updated January 28, 2013 at 10:31 pm)

UK Dockyards Society welcomes news Victoria and Albert Rows will be saved

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