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Wednesday, 19 June, 2002, 18:50 GMT 19:50 UK
United Nations praise for Byker wall
The Byker Wall
The Byker wall was built in 1970
One of Tyneside's best-known landmarks has been officially recognised by the United Nations.

The Byker Wall was built 32 years ago, and was meant to be the cutting edge of architectural design.

The building and its architect Ralph Erskine have been criticised amid claims the design is "garish".

Now it is being honoured by the British arm of a United Nations organisation called the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICMS).

'Obviously delighted'

The Newcastle council estate of 1700 homes built in 1970, is included in a list of buildings, which include the Barbican in London and the Dounreay nuclear power reactor.

Newcastle City Council's capital investment manager, Chris Mills said: "We are obviously delighted that we have earned world recognition for the development at Byker.

"We are currently putting together a conservation plan for Byker, which involves working with tenants and technical teams.

All all work is being carried out in liaison with English Heritage and the North East Civic Trust.

A spokesman for the ICMS said: "Social housing developments are amongst the most important innovations of the century, and the Byker Wall is one of the best examples."

The city council says it is still awaiting information from the government on whether the housing scheme is to be granted listed status.


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