Southgate Shopping Centre – Owen Luder, Bath

Southgate Shopping Centre – Owen Luder, Bath

Submitted by Jim Warren, he had the following to say about this recently demolished shopping centre.

According to the council, to replace a shopping centre that is drab and uninviting with one fit for the 21st Century. In practice, it was a “bright idea” for the Millennium to remodel Bath to make it vibrant and relevant to the present day, that then took 10 years to get through the planning process.

How it looked at night

How it looked at night

This bright idea ignored the fact that the residents of Bath still bore a grudge that 5 acres of perfectly serviceable 200+ year old mostly Georgian shops were demolished to build Luder’s “shopping centre of the future” (which a graffiti artist labelled “Bath Borstal” even before it had been completed), and now that it is at the end of its useful life residents used to the idea that buildings last centuries found the idea of a 35-year lifespan incomprehensible. It also ignored the fact that tourists come to Bath for its old buildings, not its new ones. It also ignored the fact that Luder’s award winning shopping centre, although getting shabby, contained shops that were doing good business and in the gap between demolishing it and replacing it with new shops, people have learned to shop elsewhere. If you want to see Luder’s centre reduced to rubble and what replaced it, see http://southgate.ipl.com/video.html

Photos thanks to analogueandy on flickr