The Gardens, Clarendon Quarter

The Gardens, Clarendon Quarter, shown here with the cladding removed

In an article dated the 28th November 2016, the Yorkshire Evening post announced the forthcoming opening of the Clarendon Quarter on the site of the former St Michael’s College. The article reported:

“Clarendon Quarter, on St John’s Road, opens on January 7 with 261 studio apartments offered at a reduced rent for keyworkers, including nurses and those employed in retail, who earn under £30,000 a year. Phase two of the scheme, which is a conversion of St Michael’s Catholic College with some new build, will see 61 one, two and three-bedroom apartments ready for open market rental at the end of February. The site, owned by American insurance giant AIG, brings the concept of co-living to Yorkshire.”

Earlier today, I noticed that all the cladding had been removed from the section of the Clarendon Quarter known as “The Gardens.” I asked one of the workmen if this was because the cladding was flammable. He emphatically responded, “There is no flammable material on this building.” I said to him, “In that case, why is the cladding being replaced.” He said that it needed replacing to improve the building’s appearance.

The Grenfell Tower fire took place on the 14th June 2017, just a few months after the opening of The Gardens. With one bedroom flats currently on offer there at £895 per month, and three bedroom flats on offer at £1,495 per month, it’s as well that the cladding used wasn’t flammable. Otherwise, it would have been impossible for the flat owners to rent out their flats.

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