Is this illegal?

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Anonymous (not verified)
Is this illegal?

This was 54 Mowbray Road, Greenside about a week ago. We know the house had been bought and thought the new owners were finally doing some restoration, but what we realised was that they were only stripping the assets – the art deco doors and windows, the parquet flooring and then the next day we walked past and they had completely flattened the house. Surely this is illegal?

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Checking with the PHRAG

The latest we have heard on this is that heritage organisations are checking the status with the PHRAG. If the owners did not have a permit then they have broken the law.

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Johan (not verified)
Old house

This house was terrible. I'm glad they finally broke it down. I walked past it last week. The building rubble was still on site. Not sure if its been cleared or not? Looks like it was about to collapse anyway. You can see there's no brick force even in the structural walls. I just hope they build a nicer home there.

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33 users have voted.
mohammed (not verified)
54 mowbray str

I had a look at this house before it was sold , the bricks where decaying , l'm glad the new owner demolished the house . The rotting bricks and badly filled floors would have led to breeding of rodents and other insects

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33 users have voted.
Nabeelah (not verified)
rotting heritage

I was interested in purchasing this house and went to see it on a showday. It was in a horrible state of neglect. There was hardly anything of value let alone art deco. The previous owner had made three renovations to the house with no regard to the original design. The house had a pitched roof. Seems the previous owner just wanted space so she added 3 rooms with flat roofs. It was horrible! Certainly no Voortrekker monument that needed to be restored and shown to future generations.

I am glad somebody decided to remove that ugly blemish on an otherwise lovely road in leafy Greenside. Hopefully they will build a decent home and add some value to surrounding houses.

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28 users have voted.
Re: 54 Mowbray Road, Greenside

Unfortunately, if the owners were stripping the assets and flattening the building, it is unlikely that their actions were illegal; but their activities were, in my view, criminal. To paraphrase a conservationist friend of mine "Yes, the looting continues. It's going on across the planet, destroying people, their heritage and nature." Are we brave enough to step away from our self-absorption and greed and stand up against this kind of individual self aggrandisement and how do ordinary people like me put a stop to it?

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20 users have voted.
Destroying Heritage

There is a big difference between destroying heritage sites with historical or cultural value. Removing an eyesore that has already been tastelessly renovated is a different matter. Of course there are buildings in our city that require preservation.
The pictures that have been posted above however actually prove that this home had no architectural significance. “A proper community, we should remember also, is a commonwealth: a place, a resource, an economy. It answers the needs, practical as well as social and spiritual, of its members" Wendell Berry

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Johan Botha

Eric Lyall (not verified)
54 Mowbray Road, Greenside

I totally agree that buildings "with a story to tell" should be preserved for future generations no matter what their age BUT to simply call any building over 60 years old a "heritage building" is utter nonsense. There are thousands of dwellings in and around Johannesburg of that age...are we to treat them all as heritage buildings? I think not. As far as 54 Mowbray Road is concerned, I also saw the house whilst it was on the market and wrote it off as a complete and utter dump. Heritage building? Get real folks!

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36 users have voted.
This question from our Ask

This question from our Ask the Experts section is relevant here...Is a structure older the 60 years automatically considered heritage?

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