Rochdale Observer - - NEWS -

I HAVE been mean­ing to write some­thing for some time about the pro­posed de­mo­li­tion of the town flats – the Seven Sis­ters as they are af­fec­tion­ately known. My prob­lem was whether I wanted to see them go or stay.

On the one hand, they are pretty ugly, let’s be hon­est. They are very much of their time and that time be­ing the 70s when ar­chi­tec­tural flair and style just did not ex­ist – a time of con­crete and form over flair.

They kind of de­fine the town we live in and the fact that since the 70s our ar­chi­tec­tural her­itage has been slowly de­mol­ished to make way for dull, grey build­ings. I can­not think of any other town where this has been the case to this de­gree. I can see why peo­ple would be glad to see the back of them.

They are not the pret­ti­est build­ings, but you kind of get used to them. A bit like a wart on the face – it is just there, and af­ter a while you for­get it is there.

Yes, they are ugly but they have be­come part of the land­scape and they are just…..there.

I sup­pose one rea­son is be­cause of the set­ting – if they were in the mid­dle of the coun­try­side, sur­rounded by trees and hills and things, they would stand out like a sore thumb, but po­si­tioned where they are, they just sort of fit in.

And I don’t know about you, but when­ever I come back from hol­i­day or what­ever, the sight of the flats from afar is my first vis­ual in­di­ca­tion that I am back home.

I read one quote from some­body who said that they were “iconic”. Hmmm, I wouldn’t go that far.

In the end I have de­cided to come down on the side of those who want to let them stay and the rea­son for this is that the ones that are lead­ing the protests seem to be the ones who ac­tu­ally live there and if they are happy to stay then I re­ally don’t see the point of bring­ing them down.

And if truth be told, how many peo­ple will be housed in the same area? – I sus­pect not as many.

So let’s keep our warts, shall we? – per­haps with a lick of paint and a new cov­er­ing they could be smartened up.

We just need to de­cide on a colour. How about grey?

Some of the Seven Sis­ters in the town cen­tre

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