In recent decades many of our cities and towns have suffered urban centre decline. Urban fringe development has undermined the centres which were once the sole focal point of an market centre. When a building or group of buildings are left empty and if neglect is allowed to set in, there is a tipping point when dereliction takes hold. This has in turn a knock on effect on the surrounding area. A vision is needed to renew these centres as a place of life, work and social interaction. Instead of being seen as a problem, vacant buildings can be valued as an asset and opportunity to bring a new generation back to town living, provide business start-up locations and the location for social, community and arts development. The answer must lie in creating new co-operative initiatives between local authorities, business and community voluntary organisations to target new uses and activities in the centre and not in the periphery and to secure proportionate and targeted tax incentives as well as other practical supports.
An Taisce has embarked on cataloguing all Buildings at Risk throughout the country. This is a massive undertaking. As such, we need all the help we can get. You’re invited to get involved by providing photographs and other information of abandoned, derelict or otherwise endangered buildings in your area to be added to the list. We will then add theses buildings to our database.
Hopefully, with enough time and volunteers, we will be able to build up an accurate picture of the status of Ireland’s built heritage today, and the challenges it faces. So, feel free to spend a Saturday or Sunday afternoon out in your area with your camera, documenting historic structures which are vacant, derelict, in danger of demolition or otherwise endangered.
It is intended that this database will encompass Ireland’s entire built heritage, including (but not limited too) country houses, churches, industrial heritage and vernacular built heritage.
Additionally add us on Facebook and view our Buildings at Risk Album for Dublin!