Giant ashtrays land on Cally Road

Cally road 002 The big ugly brick building on the Cally Road has recently become even uglier with the installation of some giant ashtrays along the pavement. Lisa has sent in pictures of these new steel planters that have mysteriously appeared outside the cash handling building on the Cally hear Killick Street.  Lisa who lives nearby says:

'That's all we need is more street clutter, with convenient places to hide  behind as lone women walk by at night!'

Planters like this often suffer from having their planting budget cut in later years – and they become forlorn grassy islands full of rubbish.  I wonder how much they cost?

Cally road 004 The ugly big brick building is a rare thing – a purpose designed cash handling centre where they sort and repack cash for cash machines etc.  It is a modern fortress with no windows an anti climb roof presumably handling millions of pounds a day.  It is on the site of the old All Saints church, opposite a lovely, intact Victorian terrace.  It belongs to another era of urban regeneration but probably provides local jobs – does anyone know anything about it – do you work there perhaps – leave a comment and let us know what it is like inside.

About William Perrin

Active in Kings Cross London and South Oxfordshire, founder of Talk About Local, helping people find a voice online and a trustee of The Indigo Trust , Good Things Foundation and ThreeSixtyGiving as well as Connect8.
This entry was posted in Local businesses, Planning, Licensing and Regulation. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Giant ashtrays land on Cally Road

  1. Daniel Z says:

    Absolutely beautiful, modern, and green, and the flower pots are recyclable and long living at that. I just made pics myself of that for an entry, but William had it first. I really really like these. So much for diversions on taste. I think it is most progressive by Islington to spend money on flower pots rather than cement possible surplus cash from the street environment budget out on street tarring. This is excellent stuff. The ashtray description is a little harsh in my eyes. I welcome all flowering initiatives. Just how progressive was Islington by putting flower pots in the middle of Upper Street earlier this year. Very good. Hope this will be a continuing stream of greening, and one that other boroughs will learn from.

  2. Sorry to disagree, what a waste of money and more clutter on the street.

    Less is more, more trees are what we need not planters and hanging baskets that require attention.

  3. Phil Gee says:

    I think the criticism is a bit harsh – let’s remind ourselves that someone has spent some time to add much needed greenery to our area.

    Maintenance is an issue – perhaps the new planters will inspire the tidying up of the existing brick planter.

  4. Andrew says:

    Nice shiny stainless steel! 🙂

    As I have trouble keeping these surfaces clean in my own kitchen I doubt it is a sensible surface for Cally Road.

    I don’t think they will look so shiny and new after a few posters have been glued to them, and after a bit of tagging, and then they have been cleaned (scratched).

    If they wanted to put more plants on the footpath, a raised bed of plants made of London stock bricks with cast/rought iron railings (as is across the road) may have been more sensible. This has been the material of choice for a couple of hundred years.

  5. Sophie Talbot says:

    And this makes a complete mockery of the consultation processes being run here about movement and open spaces. For example, Sense have continually made the point that street furniture like these planters are often barriers for disabled people making movement around the area an obstacle course for people with a range of disabilities. Why our local authority keeps paying consultants to waste our time when LBI is going to do what they want anyway is beyond me…

  6. Paul Convery says:

    There’s an aura of secrecy surrounding these planters. Their arrival absolutely mystified me because, usually, Councillors get told about something like this (and occasionally we are even asked what we think). Not this time. On enquiring, I received a rather hush, hush ‘phone call from a senior public realm manager in Islington Council whispering something about the Official Secrets Act being invoked. So I’ll probably be locked up for revealing the following.

    The ‘authorities’ have required that some heavy defences be placed on the highway alongside this building. As we all know perfectly well, it’s a sort of money wholesale depot where armoured trucks come and go during the day to pick up (presumably) cash for central London bank branches and dispensers. I guess the building has had some kind of risk assessment and the conclusion reached that it needs some further protection to prevent ram-raiding. Anyway, the cost of the planters has not been met by the Council and their eventual removal (one day) will also be swallowed by the same national institution which has its head office located (clue) not a million miles from Threadneedle Street.

    I guess the real issue here is not really the planters but the presence in our neighbourhood of this high security target … and the consequential risks associated with it. When built, I guess the location of this fortress made some sense as it was located in a very low density area mainly consisting of run-down warehouses. Now it’s a vibrant residential area and, if this building really is considered to have a heightened risk, perhaps we ought to consider getting it moved to somewhere else. After all, the kind of risks envisiaged by the authorities are not just risks to the building and its contents but also to the people who live nearby.

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