Heritage England have regraded Madeira Terrace as a II* structure.
The nerds amongst you will enjoy reading the citation. A few headlines for others:
- This designation is deserved by ‘particularly important buildings of more than special interest’
- There is no other building like it in the English historic record (closest is a Victorian pier)I
- It’s ‘monolithic’ form is considered very rare of possibly uniqueI
- It is thought to be the longest cast iron structure in England and possibly the world.
The Madeira Drive green wall gets a special mention:
“Earlier, between 1830 and 1833, the natural East Cliff at Brighton was made good by the application of a concrete covering, and was then planted up to achieve a green wall which is now believed to be the oldest and largest of its kind in Europe, with over 100 species of flowering plants recorded.”
Now to save it…
(Painting by Vincent Donlin)
Unfortunately, and unsurprisingly, this weekend’s Green Architecture Day has been cancelled. The better news is it is re-scheduled for 3 October.
James Farrell from Brighton & Hove Building Green will be giving a tour of Madeira Drive to delegates from this year’s Green Architecture Day.
Expect local history, tall tales, and environmental inspiration!
28 March, Grand Parade, Brighton
Sign up here.
The next Green Gym working party is this Thursday 5 March, 10am, Duke’s Mound.
Be there or be square. If you do come, bring tools, gloves and high vis if possible…as there may not be enough to go round.
All to keep the UK’s longest, oldest green wall in tip top condition for the Spring!
Jax Atkins from the Save Madeira Terraces campaign has announced the Council budget committee’s decision this week to contribute £13.4 million to the restoration of Madeira Terrace.
This is fabulous news – it’s not the total budget required, but with the architect and design team about to be established, a committed bunch of local people involved in advising the Council, and the good work already done to fundraise in the community and protect the Madeira Drive green wall, we should see some progress at last!
Building Green represents the environment sector on the advisory committee. If you have concerns or questions you would like us to raise on your behalf, get in touch.
image from Facebook Madeira Terraces group.
Found in a second hand shop…a framed print of how Madeira Road could have developed. By architect John Johnson, and published in The Builder, May 5, 1883, the ‘improvements’ show features that are still in place, and many now lost or never implemented.
Surviving still – albeit with sections lost over the years – is the ‘green wall’, running from the Chain Pier (now the sun terrace) to Paston Place. Banjo groyne is there. There is the idea of a lift from Marine Parade (the print shows two lifts) – now part of the Concorde 2 of course. There were gardens and squares in Kemp Town. There were extensive lawns and bandstands on Madeira Road. Some of these were built and maintained for many years, but have all now been lost. And there was planting in the road – hedges close to the Madeira Terrace, which this architect hadn’t envisaged.
Obviously not taken forwards are the grand looking hall to the east of the Chain Pier, and the car free streets!
Questions remain. Was there an architectural competition, and was the winner the Council’s own Philip Cawston Lockwood who imagined the Madeira Terrace? Whose idea was it to establish the green wall? And what is today’s vision for the future of East Brighton seafront?
New short piece on Brighton’s green wall by Thames Media.
Love the credits!