From There… To Here

The social history of Wester Hailes

Time To Go

photo by Kevin Walsh 1990

About 20 years after they were built, time was called on the high rises.  The demolition of the three blocks at Hailesland was just the start of a transformation for the area.  The future of the blocks was sealed when it became apparent that their structure was potentially unsound and they joined the huge pile of rubble being created around the country as similar blocks in several other major cities were condemned.  Despite all the evidence produced, it was due to the hard work and determination of local residents that finally in 1990, the towers started to come down. 

Building faults had been identified as far back as 1982 when serious concerns about the Bison Development design used for the high rises were raised.  The precast slab construction used had already been identified as the culprit for structural instability in flats condemned to be demolished in Liverpool, Manchester and London.  Perhaps designed and planned with good intentions, the limited budgets and cut corners ensured an incredibly short shelf life for these structures, resulting in much hardship and stress for their local residents.

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