Once upon a time, long before three ominous black blobs appeared at Liverpool's Mann Island, a planning brief for the site was adamant that the development should not interfere with the best views of the cherished Three Graces. Whoops.
So, what's the problem?
Well, it turns out the views of ordinary people in Liverpool have not been taken into account.
And what's new about that, exactly?
These aren't any old views – we're talking about prized views of our “world-famous” Three Graces on our “world-famous” waterfront.
What about them?
They're not there any more, that's what. Instead, they have been obscured by the ever-expanding Neptune development work. And, it has emerged, the loss of two out of three “key views” of the famous Pier Head buildings was contrary to the demands of the original planning brief for Mann Island.
Ah, but that brief was never set in stone; it didn't say 'you've got to keep the views', just, 'it might be nice if you could keep them, but we quite understand that people might prefer to look at some giant black blocks instead.
Right, so it wasn't an order, more an opinion? What you might call a, erm, view?
Indeed! It was somebody taking a view.
And then Neptune took our view?
Neptune? You mean the Roman god that rules the waves.
No, I mean the one that waives the . . .
Great idea! Neptune's three new soon-to-be-”iconic” structures would be the ideal replacements. And, unlike the old ones, they won't show the dirt.
But how is all this going to play with the people who granted World Heritage Status to the waterfront?
World Heritage Status? Blimey, was that before or after they built the multi-storey car park at Princes Dock?
What do you think?
Stop whingeing, will you? Standing here in Birkenhead and looking at our fantastic waterfront, I'd say it was in great shape.
Oh, yeh, the same shape as Neptune's famous trident.
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