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Earlier news from 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, and from 1998-2000.

20th Jan 2009 - LaSalle aims to extend existing Coppergate shops
Interesting! The American owners of York's Coppergate Centre have applied for planning permission to extend some of the exisiting shops over the goods delivery bays, and also to re-brand the centre with new signage. See Press report. We wonder... does this mean LaSalle has seen the light and 'Castle Piccadilly' is now dead? Do they realise they've been sold a pup by Land Securities? Who knows. However, developing the existing centre is certainly better than the horrible extension that was concocted by LandSec and the City of York Council.

3rd Nov 2008 - European ruling undermines Council's cosy collaboration
A ruling by the European Court of Justice in Roanne, France, has dealt a hammer-blow to the way some Councils choose developers for land that they own. No longer will Councils like York be able to make secret deals with companies like Land Securities or Centros. They will have to put the land up for formal tender. The Castle Piccadilly site is similar to the case in France. See Press report.

23rd May 2008 - Dave Taylor appointed as York's Heritage Champion
It is a positive move to see that York has appointed its first Heritage Champion. Green Party Councillor, Dave Taylor, has long been an ally of the Castle Area Campaign and we're sure that he will speak up for Clifford's Tower and the historic environment in York. Councillor Taylor's first public statement about the role.

1st May 2008 - Clifford's Tower massacre highlighted in BBC series
BBC4's series "Inside the Medieval Mind" tonight focussed on belief. As the church's grip increased in medieval times, people were dragged before religious courts and thousands killed in the name of God. Professor Robert Bartlett came to York to reveal how York's Jewish population was exterminated at Clifford's Tower in 1190.

7th Feb 2008 - Conservationists' fears for Coppergate site
York's newspaper, The Press, reports that spokespeople from the Castle Area Campaign, York Tomorrow, and York Civic Trust have voiced concerns that the same mistakes are not repeated by the new developers.

6th Feb 2008 - LaSalle Investment Management and Centros take on Coppergate
The Castle Area Campaign is initially pleased to hear that Land Securities has sold the 200,000 sq ft Coppergate Centre and adjoining properties in Piccadilly in York. The new owners are a US company LaSalle Investment Management. We shall have to see whether they behave with greater sensitivity towards York's historic core and the scheduled ancient monument of Clifford's Tower.

In turn, LaSalle has appointed Centros, formerly Centros Miller, as the development manager. It may be too early to judge, but we have some niggling worries about Centros, whose Chairman, John F Laker, who was involved in the first Coppergate development in York. Furthermore, the devil you know, Land Securities, is listed as a Financial & Investment Partner of Centros.

Centros Miller also seems to have a bad track record of pushing inappropriate retail developments in historic English Towns.

In Bury St. Edmonds, the Knights of St. Edmond campaign group has uncovered a secret grubby deal whereby Debenhams would get 8 years free rent in Centros' cattle market shopping mall. This sounds rather familiar to the Castle Area Campaign in York. I bet lots of local shopkeepers would be delighted if the Council or their landlord offered them 8 years free rent!

In Lancaster, residents formed IT'S OUR CITY to resist the City Council's 'preferred developer', Centros Miller. There a major retail development would involve a 100,000+ sq ft Debenhams department store.

Another campaign in Wells, Somerset claims that Centros' proposed development there "is not unlike an alien spaceship, landing in a beautiful, ancient community."

So is it a case of all change means no change? We hope not but our concern is mounting.

Further detail on The Press website.


 

Click for earlier news from 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, and 1998-2000.