Facadism

picture of facade at Ally Pally hiding the relatively new exhibition hall behind

Facadism is a new-to-me word which I learnt recently. It describes when the outside skin of an old building is left in-situ with a new building developed behind it. It’s a bit controversial in the heritage/architecture world. Some see it as too much of a compromise when development of an area takes place. As an ordinary punter I prefer it to the all of the old being ripped down.

It’s not a new concept – apparently the Georgians were at it in the 18th and 19th centuries. ThisΒ is how I came to learn my new word as I showed an example on Twitter of a Georgian building in Spitalfields (how ironic) which had been given the treatment more recently.

In the case of the pictured Ally Pally, there wasn’t much choice as much of the building was burned down in the 1980s. I didn’t know until I arrived there that 40% of the placeΒ is derelict. Plans are afoot to develop it…

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