Thursday, 3 March 2016

Don't Bring Back The Goaloids - Says Virginia Ironside

Goaloids in 2013
An application has been made by our Council to re-install the Goaloids, the football-inspired sculpture that came to Shepherd's Bush Green in 2013, and was taken down in 2015.

Local author, journalist and campaigner Virginia Ironside is urging residents to oppose their re-instatement by LBHF.

In the guest post below, Virginia makes the case why the return of the Goaloids would not enhance our neighbourhood, and why they should not be re-instated on Shepherd's Bush Green.

Virginia Ironside
"An application has been made to re-install the Goaloids (that odd cubic moving structure) on the Green.

I personally am against the re-installation, having spent two years trying to keep the Green as structure-free as possible and succeeding, with others, in preventing a large café being built upon it, and the felling of three mature trees.

Here are the reasons I think the Goaloids should not be brought back.
  1. Bad precedent  Whatever anyone thinks of the Goaloids as an art work, it is a bad precedent to allow a permanent structure on to a green public space. It will set the scene for applications for other permanent structures on the Green of different kinds ranging from things claiming to be of artistic merit or visually pleasing to large advertising hoardings.
  2. Safety   There used to be a sign by the Goaloids saying that people should not climb on it. This was ignored by most people. Either there should be a safety fence around it (which means it would not move, making nonsense of it) or then presumably it is a dangerous structure which should not be accessible for people to climb on. Were there an accident, the Council (us, the tax-payers) would be liable for any damages.
  3. Lack of Relevance   As a commemoration for the 2012 Olympics, and as a temporary structure, it might have been acceptable, but it is now long past its sell-by date.
  4. Conservation Area   The proposal to re-erect the Goaloids would place them on a piece of open public space in a Conservation Area.
  5. Legal Objections   Since the Goaloids would be a structure on common land, it would need the permission of the Secretary of State
  6. Local objections   The Hammersmith Society and the Open Spaces Society have both objected strongly.
If you would like to object, it is easy to make your views known at the official LBHF site here."

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  1. I don't know how you can make the leap to 'large advertising hoardings' here.

  2. I guess it's a "thin end of the wedge" argument. But you are surely right, advertising hoardings is a separate issue that would presumably be considered on its own merits.