Thursday, 27 June 2013

Liverpool Everyman-They Knocked It Down-Why?

The Liverpool Everyman.
A Tragedy Played Out Before Our Very Eyes-Why Did They Have To Knock It Down?

Written by Wayne Colquhoun
Yes it can only happen in Liverpool a city where the clowns in charge take a piece of culture and raze it to the ground and then make a full scale press assault in order to pull the wool over the eyes of the people.....and almost succeed.

Even all the luvvies who live and work around the Hope street area did nothing.
I was so bogged down with world heritage issues, and why should me and my colleagues do everything, to kick up a fuss over this tragic event being played out on centre stage right in front of everyone.
It is a deep regret, because both me and my colleagues at LPT have a social conscience and we now feel guilty for not arguing for its retention.
They even sold the fittings off on the basis of "Own a piece of history".
 This, done by the very people who removed the historical context.
The Everyman Theatre was not the best piece of architecture, there is no denying that, but it was this theatre that added to the cultural identity of the city.
From the 1960's and 70's it grew.
In the 80's there were some of the countries most iconic theatre perfrmed there, that inspired films. All this emanating from this little provincial place, with big ideas.
Some of its playwrights would become houshold names, can you believe that. Liverpool became European Capital of Culture in 2008 because of places like the Everyman.
I can even smell the grit and sweated determination that you felt emanating from the walls as I write.
I can conjure up images of actors pouring their hearts out, crying, laughing out loud, entertaining inspiring, motivating, moving boundaries in their art .

I also recall seeing MacBeth, with one of Liverpool's sons the actor David Morrisey, god it was an awful. thing.  It went on and on, and on. Made worse by the fact I had just had kidney stones removed, I felt I was being tortured both on and off the stage.
You are not supposed to criticise Shakespeare, but really, in Morrisseys dying scene that went on forever, I unwittingly spoke out, just under my breath, only to get a crack in the ribs "Oh just die will you so I can get home"
Yes I have also been bored to tears there, but it all counts.
The walls were rich with history, the spirit that this place absorbed became a breeding ground for future generations.
It was a little rough around the edges, reminding us of that cheeky little scouser that we all know that makes us cringe but instead you laugh and love him.
Yes the scruffy little kid down the road that looks a bit dirty but you know its only skin deep and its nothing a bit of soap and water wouldn't clean up.
So they have a bit of cash slapping around in Liverpool and what have they not managed to homogenise they think, The Everyman.
And what do the uncultured clowns who are in control do.............they knock it down, and tell us its all going to be alright because we are getting a new one.
Its like buying a load of duty free cigarettes because they are cheap and then you remember you don't smoke. Did the NWDA have surplus funds they needed to offload.
They bulldoze it right in front of the noses of the posh little dears that can now afford to live in the, now gentrified area of Hope Street, as they now call it, The Georgian Quarter.
I don't begrudge them the money they have earned it, but my recollection is that it was the anger and oppression of a generation inspired by John Osbourne, Harold Pinter and Tom Stoppard plays that made this place what it was. It had history in its walls.
The bricks oozed the heritage and the past words of artists that had found their feet there.
The cafe in the basement was an institution.  It was the place that characters such as Arthur Dooley and the art teacher who taught Stuart Suttcliffe came to blows. Everyone has a tale to tell about the place it had character, and characters were attracted there.
It was a place for renegades, it was a place for actors and musicians. It was a place you could just have an unpretentious drink.
This was the theatre that saw fledglings such as Pete Posslethwaite and others turn into accredited actors. It was a breeding ground for actors who were in, Boys from the Blackstuff , some, shouting Gizza Job and went on to get a massive one, starring in Lord of the Rings.
Willy Russell plays were put on there and were made into films.
But it all started with ordinary people. How can you measure the decades of people who had chatted and planned and plotted there.

Richard Hawley summed it up at a recent Philharmonic concert Live on stage he said "I cant believe they knocked The Everyman down. Or words to that effect.
And what do they do now, with "Our" Everyman, spend a fortune on destroying its soul, like they did, in my opinion, with the Bluecoat that reopened in 2008, that still had Herbert Tyson-Smiths sculpture studio intact. Not anymore, its gone.
 Will the Everyman demolition destroy its soul? Yes, it has for me.
But all we hear from Everyman and its dog..... is silence. Where is the alternative argument that we used to breed there.
It is being hailed as a great success, Regeneration in fact. Its not, its disgeraceful act of cultural vandalism.
I would prefer the gritty edge that it had, and with a little gentle modernisation you could have kept its unique-ness, the thing that made it special.
Gazing at the Tragedy that has befell my very eyes, everyone seems to have been taken in by it, not a murmurs of dissent from the masses its a real shame from a city that used to fight for its heritage.
They have knocked down an institution and are building a plastic replica of the very thing that should have been retained.............History and tradition obliterated.
 It wanted saving from itself and the people who ran it.
And for all the great playwrights, whose work was played there I say, sorry for what they have done, the Oligarchs of Liverpool have made huge mistake. Pete Possethwaite is probably be turning in his grave. Why was there no campaign to save it.
This tragedy was sanctioned under Warren "War Zones" Bradley's stint as leader and has now, as with Central Library, been hijacked by Joe Anderson  And all this played out before the adoring public of the Daily Ghost getting the news from The Everyman-Playhouse PR press plumpers and its Directors Deborah Aydon and Gemma Bodinetz who have worked the system to their advantage.
I recently received a phone call asking me for money to contribute towards it. It now looks like they have run out of cash and are now begging bowl to the masses.
John Osbourne's most inspiring play that informed a generation that inspired so many writers and artists that performed at The Everyman was called, look Back In Anger.

And Yeah, I do!

Edited by David Ward

And just across the way the Historic Wellingtons Rooms cant get a penny to save its soul. While it lays rotting.
You know what it may be a good thing. They will probably wreck that too, with bad design.
Right now the Council are probably negotiating with some dodgy property developer who knows Frank McSpiv and is a member of Downtown Liverpool  In Joe Andersons Pocket.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Watch 37th Unesco World Heritage Committee Meeting in Cambodia-With Liverpool High On the Agenda. Live Webcast

click on the link for access to watch live. It is a big meeting wll try and inform when Liverpool are being chastised for being on the World Heritage "In Danger" list along with Aleppo which is currently having the gubbings blown out of it in war torn Syria,

Friday, 14 June 2013

Liverpool, Back Before Unesco World Heritage Committee-Will We Be Stripped of World Heritage Site Status

This Month finds Liverpool 2008 European Capital of Culture back before the World Heritage Committee of the United Nations Education Scientific Cultural Organisation (Unesco).

We have unceremoniously been dumped on the Unesco World Heritage In Danger list (or as one man and his dog campaigner Larry Neild, on Liverpool Confidential website flippently calls it "The naughty step)".
Liverpool has been placed on the "In Danger" list  along with the war torn city of Aleppo in Syria and various corrupted third world countries that can't maintain the World Heritage sites.
You could understand it from a poor country with little or no infrastructure but Liverpool it seems, wants to sell its WHS to the, well, lowest bidder really, Peel Holdings.
 Who do not want the little problem of their land being hindered with Liverpool’s Mercantile and Maritime past which is why we were awarded WHS status in 2004.

June 16th sees the start of the Unesco World Heritage Committee meeting in Phnom Penh in Cambodia.
The UK Government has to show to the committee, as requested in the 36th committee meeting in St Petersburg meeting of 2012, proposals to get Liverpool off the World Heritage In danger list.
The threat is for inappropriate style development, after LCC passed plans for a 5.5 billion pound development, that appears to be pie in the sky, as nearly two years later not a single brick has been laid.
We got off with being placed on the Unesco “In Danger” list in 2007 by volunteering the Cities WHS status up to Unesco......... as a test case. to show how it can be developed, old and new in harmony.
And instead we find ourselves a basket case
We have tried to stimulate a debate that would see architectural styles discussed but what has happened is, the level of debate has been hijacked by Liverpool City Council and Peels PR companies, and that debate has descended into the usual, scouse humour slang off, charade, that only stifles constructive argument, and brings it down to a level that suits the developers.
There is no problem in developing this site in sensitive manner that looks for inspiration to cities like Amsterdam.
A city that seems educated and willing enough to take the time and trouble to engage its architecturally educated public instead of having slang off in the local press. Why cant Liverpool do this as Unesco ordered it to.
Unesco told Liverpool when we escaped, by a whisker, being placed on the “In Danger” list in 2006 that it must engage the public, not keep them in the dark .
Ron Van Ours of Unesco said that in the past, the problem  was, that the Governments advisers English Heritage were supporting the schemes at the Pier Head and they could not go against them. He told told LPT and other delegates this, face to face.
Despite Sir Neil Cossons the Chairman of English Heritage, at the time working for Liverpool Museum who were developing the site, they were powerless.
Sir Neil was later given a whole Steam train exhibition to curate at the Walker Art Gallery.
Peel Holdings do not want us to have a world heritage site because it will impede their style of architecture.
The very style that saw them win Building Design’s Carbuncle Cup award of 2012 for Media City in Salford
This arrogant approach that Peel holdings have taken is in fact stopping development if they had come up with a scheme of any merit well we all would have welcomed their development,
But to propose to build Trafford Park-On-Mersey is a massive let down that those who know about architectural styles can support including EH,
Because it’s big and blingy does that suit this great city. With the clowns running the city is a debate even going to happen?
Do Peel Holdings have any finances for such a huge scheme?
This week saw Margeret Hodge call Peel Holdngs tax dodgers stating that most of their profits go offshore and we the taxpayers have funded massive profits for Peel to build Media City that they own and we have paid for.
Their main Chinese partner Stella Shiu was recently exposed in Private Eye as a Hong Kong bankrupt and serious questions were asked about Sam Wa or as they should e know Sam Where, because it seems nobody knows anything about them.
Its all quite clever tactics to say we will back out of development but how serious are they about starting work.
A desired state of conservation is a sensible request from a cultural organisation.
It makes sense to show that we are a city that can combine old with new…well not if you look at the architectural anachronism that has become the Pier Head, the symbol of Liverpool’s Mercantile and Maritime past.
But here we still have an opportunity to get it right and don’t let this great city turn into Liver peel.
Is there an immediate risk of Liverpool losing WHS status?
Peel holdings don’t seem to have any capital it seems (unless its all hidden offshore). So what will Unesco do? What can they do?
It seems to me we will continue to have the shadow of removal of Liverpool from Unesco’s World Heritage List when tourism is increasingly becoming the cities main form of income.
This is an embarrassment that we cannot afford.
Would it not be common sense to make them build something the whole city can be proud of. We are not Shanghai, we inspired Shanghai’s waterfront.
Don’t let them turn our World Heritage Site into Milton Keynes-On-Sea.
We are assured that Liverpool is very much on the agenda for Unesco at this next WH Committee meeting

In a recent letter to the hardworking 'World Heritage Watchdog' David Swift from the office of Unesco WH Director Kishore Rao.

Subject: FW: Liverpool - Maritime Mercantile City (United Kingdom) (C 1180)

Dear Sir,
On behalf of Mr Kishore Rao, Director of the World Heritage Centre, I thank you for your message regarding the World Heritage property of “Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City”.
Please be assured that a report on the state of conservation of this property will be presented to the World Heritage Committee at its forthcoming 37th session. You can consult the relevant working document on the WHC’s website ( ). When doing so, you will notice that the most recent information has been taken into account in the report.
If you wish to receive the State Party’s letter on the issue, I kindly suggest that you submit the request directly to the responsible UK authorities, i.e. DCMS represented by Ms Francesca Conlon who was on copy of your last email and whom I put on copy of this message as well.
I also like to take the opportunity to inform you that Ms Patricia Alberth has recently changed jobs. You are welcome to address any question or information to me or to Ms Petya Totcharova, head of the WHC’s Europe and North America Unit.
Thank you for your interest in and commitment to the safeguarding of World Heritage.
Best regards,
Kerstin Manz

Kerstin A. Manz
UNESCO World Heritage Centre
F - 75352 Paris
Tel: +33 (0)

35. Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) (C 1150)
Year of inscription on the World Heritage List 2004
Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger 2012
Threats for which the property was inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger
The proposed development of Liverpool Waters
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger
In progress Corrective measures identified
In progress Timeframe for the implementation of corrective measures
In progress Previous Committee Decisions

See page

International Assistance N/AState of conservation of World Heritage properties WHC-13/37.COM/7A, p. 88 inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger
Previous monitoring missions October 2006: joint World Heritage Centre / ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission; November 2011: joint World Heritage Centre / ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission.

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

a) Lack of overall management of new developments;

b) Lack of analysis and description of the townscape characteristics relevant to the Outstanding Universal Value of the property and important views related to the property and its buffer zone;

c) Lack of clearly established maximum heights for new developments, for the backdrops of the World Heritage areas as well as along the waterfront;

d) Lack of awareness of developers, building professionals and the wider public about the World Heritage property, its Outstanding Universal Value and requirements under the World Heritage Convention.

Illustrative material See pages   and

Current conservation issues

On 30 January 2013, the State Party submitted a report on the state of conservation of the property responding to the Decision 36 COM 7B.93 made by the World Heritage Committee at its 36th session (Saint-Petersburg, 2012). On 27 March 2013, updated information on the decision of the Secretary of State was submitted by the State Party.

Proposed development of Liverpool Waters

It should be recalled that Liverpool Waters is a major, large scale development project that is planned to be implemented over a 30-year period in an area of 60 ha covering part of the inscribed property as well as part of its buffer zone. It stretches 2 km along the waterfront from Princes Dock up to Bramley Moore Dock and includes proposals for a cluster of tall buildings within the buffer zone.

In its report, the State Party recalled that the Liverpool City Council granted consent for the Liverpool Waters scheme, and indicated that this decision was referred to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government as a result of English Heritage’s objection to the scheme and because of the scale of the proposed development. The State Party also reported that the developer had informed that, in the event that the current proposal is not approved, it may decide to abandon attempts to regenerate the area and continue with current uses that do not require planning consent.

The State Party reported that the application was referred to the Secretary of State in October 2012. At the time of the submission of the State Party’s State of Conservation Report, no decision had yet been taken by the Secretary of State. On 27 March 2013, however, the State Party submitted additional information, reporting that the Secretary of State, on 4 March 2013, decided not to call in the case. With the decision not to intervene, there are no further legal obstacles to moving forward with the Liverpool Waters scheme. The Liverpool City Council may now confirm its consent for the development scheme and the developer could then proceed with implementation.

In its Decision 36 COM 7B.93, the Committee took note of the report of the joint reactive monitoring mission which had concluded that, in terms of visual perception, the redevelopment scheme would fragment and isolate the different dock areas, instead of integrating them into one continuous historic urban landscape. The mission therefore concluded that, if the proposed Liverpool Waters scheme as outlined were to be implemented, the World Heritage property would be irreversibly damaged due to a serious deterioration of its architectural and town-planning coherence, a serious loss of historical authenticity, and an important loss of cultural significance. It also noted that the proposed development in the buffer zone would result in the modification of the functional hierarchy State of conservation of World Heritage properties WHC-13/37.COM/7A, p. 89 inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger and morphology expressed by the port circulation system (river – sluices – dock – water basins), as well as by the historical typologies of the port industrial structures and services, thus affecting the conditions of authenticity.

Noting the decision of the Secretary of State not to review the Liverpool Waters scheme at the national level, the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies recognize that there remains no legal obstacle to moving forward with the development project. They reiterate the findings of the joint reactive monitoring mission of November 2011, as expressed in the opinion of the World Heritage Committee in Decision 36 COM 7B.93, that the proposed development of Liverpool Waters constitutes a potential threat to the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. They also note that there have been no actions to remove the potential danger as requested by the World Heritage Committee at its 36th session. They consider that if the proposed Liverpool Waters development is implemented as currently planned, it would irreversibly damage the attributes of Outstanding Universal Value and the conditions of integrity that warranted inscription, and could lead to the potential deletion of the property from the World Heritage List.

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies further draw attention to the fact that the State Party has submitted neither a Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOC), nor a proposal for corrective measures to reach that DSOC, as requested by the World Heritage Committee. In the supplementary information submitted on 27 March 2013, however, the State Party has expressed its willingness to work with the World Heritage Centre and Advisory Bodies to elaborate a DSOC and corrective measures with a time frame for their implementation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger. In April 2013, consultations have been taken up by the State Party, the World Heritage Centre and Advisory Bodies accordingly. Taking into account the continued threat to the property, the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies recommend that the Committee retain the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Draft Decision: 37 COM 7A.35

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-13/37.COM/7A,

2. Recalling Decision 36 COM 7B.93, adopted at its 36th session (Saint-Petersburg, 2012),

3. Also recalling the results of the joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission of November 2011,

4. Notes the information provided by the State Party that the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government decided not to call in the Liverpool Waters development for consideration at the national level, and that the Liverpool City Council had granted consent to the application submitted by the developer;

5. Reiterates its serious concern at the potential threat of the proposed Liverpool Waters development on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property, and also notes that the implementation of the development, as currently planned, would irreversibly damage the attributes and conditions of integrity that warranted inscription, and could lead to the potential deletion of the property from the World Heritage List;

State of conservation of World Heritage properties WHC-13/37.COM/7A, p. 90 inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger

6. Therefore, strongly urges the State Party to reconsider the proposed development to ensure the continued coherence of the architectural and town-planning attributes, and the continued safeguarding of the Outstanding Universal Value of the property including the conditions of authenticity and integrity;

7. Further notes that the State Party has not yet developed a proposal for the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger and a set of corrective measures and requests the State Party to pursue its consultations with the World Heritage Centre and Advisory Bodies to elaborate a Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger along with a set of corrective measures, and a time frame for their implementation;

8. Decides to retain Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) on the World Heritage List in Danger; 9. Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2014, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above,

The letter from DCMS to Unesco is of course trying to mitigate the situation that the UK Government finds itself in.
A city being blackmailed by a company that Margeret Hodge calls tax dodgers and Jack Straw calls a lot of other things.
a city being run by uncultured idiots who care nothing about dealing Heritage and are prepared to turn a blind eye to ruthless companies motives and their habitual bending of the rules.
And maybe a populace who lack the culture or the drive to do anything about it nd sit on their hands.

Thursday, 13 June 2013

"We Are Not Tax Dodgers" say Peel Holdings- Oh Yeah! And My Auntie Is My Uncle.

Margeret Hodge accuses Peel of 'Tax Dodging'
Property giants Peel Group have been accused of ‘tax-dodging’ by an influential panel of MPs.

Tax crusader Margaret Hodge – famed for her attacks on Starbucks, Google and Amazon – dubbed the firm a virtual ‘monopoly’ and attacked the BBC for handing it millions of pounds in licence fee cash.
During an outing to Salford’s MediaCity, Mrs Hodge’s powerful public accounts committee grilled BBC chiefs on the value of their £1bn move north.
She singled out its contract with landlord Peel for criticism – claiming some parts of the giant pay no tax at all.
Committee chair Mrs Hodge began by congratulating those giving evidence – BBC North director Peter Salmon, BBC trustee Anthony Fry and Zarin Patel, its chief financial officer – on delivering the move on time and broadly within budget.
But she said they should have tried harder to find a firm that paid more tax.

This was reported in the Manchester Evening News. And not a mention  from The Daily Ghost or The Oldham Echo who did a tacky upbeat story instead to convince the readership who they educate, or dont, that Peel Holdings are Liverpool's Savior's despite Liverpools WHS being on the Unesco "In Danger" list..
We have asked serious questions of Liam Murphy and David Bartlett on how they have been  printing what Peels Media Company want him to without question.
Liam Murphy needs to be careful or he may end up with an IPPC complaint made against him and the corrupted paper that he works for.

‘We Are Not Tax Dodgers’, Says Peel

11 June

Peel Group, Manx-controlled owners of Manchester’s Trafford Centre and Liverpool’s docks, denied a Public Accounts Committee claim that they never pay more than ten per cent corporation tax. Margaret Hodge, chairwoman of the PAC and scourge of tax dodgers at Amazon, Starbucks and Google, said some parts of Peel’s £6.6 billion property empire ‘do not pay their fair share’ of tax. She criticised the BBC for handing millions of licence payers’ cash to Peel during a billion pound move from London to MediaCityUK at Salford Quays. She congratulated the BBC on delivering the project but said she was fed up of hearing about restrictions imposed by the EU forcing the BBC to deal with Peel. At a hearing in Salford she said,’Peel almost have a monopoly of a lot of capital investment in this area, which always worries me as to whether you, the BBC, gets the best price.’

Peel complained in a statement that they had not been warned about the attack. A spokesman said, ‘Following comments made at the Public Accounts Committee meeting on Monday, The Peel Group would like to make it clear that it rejects any assertion that it is not paying its fair share of corporation tax.All Peel operating businesses, including Peel Media (the developers and owners of MediaCityUK), are UK domiciled for taxation purposes and pay the appropriate level of UK tax.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Liverpool Banksy Destroyed-You Dirty Rat.......Or Was It A Cat?.

Liverpool Confidential breaks the news that Banksy' Rat has been destroyed.

IT was covered up as an eyesore, in 2008, when the Capital of Culture people didn't know what it was.

Then someone nicked its "machine gun" and, later, it was bought by a pair of nightclub owners who vowed to emulsion over the dirty rat because they didn’t like modern art.
Now the final indignation: Banksy's rat, on the Whitehouse pub, has been decapitated. And, despite assurances by the building’s newest owners that it will be restored, one hacked off heritage campaigner and art dealer says the world’s biggest Banksy is gone forever.

Costa yarn
Six weeks ago, Ascot Properties, who bought the rotting Grade II-listed building at the start of 2011, announced that if the worst came to the worst and the rat had to come down during renovations, they would arrange for local artists to repaint it on to new rendering.
Their comments came in the wake of a bogus internet yarn claiming the derelict building was to see new life a Costa Coffee. This, in itself, was enough to send the righteous frothing over their lattes. But it was all a storm in a cafetiere and Costa were bemused.
The case of the disappearing rat
Three weeks later, the rat, which appeared during the 2004 Liverpool Biennial, vanished altogether and now only bare brick can be seen.
Ascot announced that the head had been removed by specialist restorers and put into storage. But what it didn't say is if the artwork, with an estimated value of £1m, would ever be back.
Ascot spokesman Stuart Howard said then: “We want to allay any fears that we have just thrown it out. We have been working closely with the city council and have drafted in a specialist restoration team.
“The artwork was in a fairly bad condition, most of the painting which was on wooden panels covering the buildings windows had fallen off as the wood had rotted.

“But we have been assured that it can be restored to its original condition and the pieces have been numbered and taken away to secure storage.”
Today art dealer and heritage campaigner Wayne Colquhoun said Ascot's explanation didn’t wash with him - while the council said it was in the dark as to where the rat's remains might be.
“First of all, the most important part of it is the head - and that was painted on to stucco. This could never be restored to its original condition. They would need rather a lot of Araldite to glue that back together.
Cat? Rat? Machine gun? Lipstick? Marker pen? All there anyway in the Big Dig
“As for retracing it, this artwork – by its very nature – can never be replicated. You can never sum up the spirit of an original.
“The same effect of an artist waiting to be arrested in the dead of night is what gives graffiti art its spirit.
“Destroying an original Banksy to put in its place a copy is beyond a joke. It would be a repro.”
He added: “The boards below may have been saved but will be badly rotted as they were not marine ply and the glue of plywood disintegrates. They claim they have put the pieces into numbered storage but then what? A piece of board with the tail on could fetch a fortune at auction in the States.

“It is gone and a repro is never going to recapture it.” Wayne Colquhoun: 'You  can never sum up the spirit of an original'A Liverpool City Council spokesman told Confidential that the Banksy's fate was down to the premises' owners. The buiding was listed in 2004, shortly before the graffiti appeared.

The council classed it as "an unauthorised addition to a listed building", although the spokesman concurred it was “probably much more valuable than the rest of building”.

"The council's involvement in this is that we provided the owners of the building - Ascot property group - with a £307,000 grant under something called the Townscape Heritage Initiative, which was aimed at bringing historical buildings back into use.”

He added: "It's really up to the owners of the property to decide how they are going to deal with the Banksy."

Planning consent for retail and flatsAscot have planning permission to turn the pub – which they acquired for an undisclosed sum – into ground floor retail with apartments above.

Colquhoun said: “The property had been left to decay and it was claimed it was to be preserved, after a repairs notice was served on the property's former owners, but Liverpool is a city that is incapable of preserving anything of note these days, be it old or new.
“I smell a rat, aided and abetted by Liverpool City Council who need to approve repairs on a listed building, of which this is one, before they are carried out.
“It seems hard to believe that you would do this without consultation to the masses. What is the point of having a planning process?”
“This was a listed building with a famous artwork. You couldn't make it up.”
The city spokesman said that while it does remains interested in the fate of the Banksy, regulations state that the council only has to be satisfied that the work the developers are doing will protect the building itself, in line with its listing.
Nobody from Ascot was available for comment either by phone today or last Friday, when Liverpool Confidential visited their Waterloo offices.

Liverpool Confidential have their fingers on the pulse once again always worth a read.