Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The return of Flo Clucas and the disappearance of Ringo's house

Almost a year after we got an response from Flo Clucas, Liverpool councillor, to questions we'd asked months before about Ringo Starr's house, we actually have finally heard some answers to a couple of the questions we'd asked.

The Mirror reports Flo as announcing the sort-of house will appear in the expensive and pointless Museum of Liverpool the city council is proposing to blight its own waterfront with:

The ageing two-up two-down terraced house is among 427 to be flattened in Toxteth, Liverpool.

The one where the former Beatles drummer lived at 9 Madryn Street will be kept and rebuilt in the Museum of Liverpool when it opens in 2010.

City Cllr Flo Clucas said: "It will have the same bricks and much of the original materials."


The question of if a house with only some of its original materials and in another place entirely is actually the same historical building is something worthy of The Pig That Wants To Be Eaten, and we'd love it if The Mirror could point to a building anywhere on the planet that isn't ageing.

More importantly, why has this story suddenly bubbled up in the press again? After all, it was back in September 2005 when Flo originally tried to split the Beatles fans out of the enormous lobby of people asking why 400 perfectly workable houses in the Dingle were being torn down and rebuilt when it would have been cheaper and more ecologically friendly to just restore the terraces to their original glory. Saving Ringo's house in some way seemed to remove any quasi-historical objections to flattening the land and handing it over to developers.

It seems to be in the nationals again today because of a report in the Liverpool Echo which actually said the opposite to the Mirror story - nothing has actually been agreed on yet, as, erm, someone else owns the house:

A spokesman for National Museums Liverpool said: “We are hopeful that we will be able to give a home to Ringo’s childhood house.”

He added: “Negotiations are under way with all parties involved with the house and there are still many details to be worked out, but it would make a fantastic feature in the museum and we are hugely popular with visitors[sic].”


Flo, meanwhile, seems like she's starting to distance herself slightly from the scheme:

Cllr Flo Clucas, who originally suggested the idea, said: “It would form part of Liverpool’s Beatles trail and people could see the house where Ringo lived when he was very little.

“I also think it is a brilliant way of preserving the lifestyle of people who lived in the Welsh Streets.

“But until the house is bought up, we cannot do anything.

“It remains a suggestion and is out of my hands at the moment.”


Hmmm. All of this is slightly odd, as in her email almost a year ago to me, Flo told No Rock that the organisation of a new home for Ringo's home was a done deal:

Number 9 Madryn Street does , however, have a cultural significance, Although that the house where Ringo spent most of his life in Liverpool is only a few minutes distance from Madryn Street, is still occupied and will remain so for many years yet, we have endeavoured to find a new home for this, his early years home. This has been done.

"This has been done" on the 30th January 2006 translates into "we cannot do anything... it remains a suggestion... out of my hands" on 10th January 2007. Curious.


2 comments:

damiank said...

I think you should read "This has been done" in the same context as "I have endeavoured to find a new home for my neighbour's new 42 inch widescreen plasma TV"

Local said...

I'm a local to these streets.

They want people out, so they can sell crap new builds at silly prices that no one here would want to live in. Tenants won't be allowed back into the area as well less than 10% of the properties will be for rent/lease.

So for some of these houses to be left to rot for 20 years and still be in better structural condition than some of the stuff built in the last decade.

THE ONLY REASON ANY HOUSE IS IN ANY POOR CONDITION IS BECAUSE THEY HAVE BEEN LEFT/ENCOURAGED TO BECOME SO BY THE COUNCIL & SOCIAL LANDLORDS WHO OWN THE VAST MAJORITY OF THESE HOUSES & WILL NOT SELL TO PEOPLE WHO WOULD LIKE TO RENOVATE AT ANY COST.

THEY'VE BEEN LEFT TO RUN DOWN SINCE THE RIOTS & HAVE HAD THE WORST POSSIBLE TENANTS PUT IN TO ENCOURAGE FOLK OUT.

p.s. Been described as "social cleansing" by a local labour MP.

HELP SAVE RINGO'S BIRTHPLACE
www.inmyliverpoolhome.org

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