Anti-Undershaw comments - My thoughts

I've seen a number of articles on line that have been rather anti-Undershaw. However most of these people are missing the point. This was not just a fight about saving a home of one of our country's greatest writers. It was wider than that.

Leaving aside its famous occupant, this was a grade II listed house that had been bought with a view to redevelopment. It was a gamble and when you gamble (as its owners did) you are not entitled to win.

The owners of this house effectively caused damage to it by persistent neglect which flew in the face of the requirements of its grade II listed status. If they had won the case it would have sent out the clear message that listing regulations can be ignored.

That precedent alone is something worth fighting against.

We now have a window of opportunity to save Undershaw as a single structure and that is a good thing. Not all battles can be won, of course, but it is important that they are fought or people will walk all over regulations with impunity.

Even if Undershaw fell down tomorrow the message would at least have been sent that if you don't comply with regulations you cannot guarantee to get away with little more than a slap on the wrist.