[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Monday, 5 June 2006, 06:20 GMT 07:20 UK
Crossrail plan 'threat' to museum
Rail passengers
It is hoped that Crossrail will relieve overcrowding on London trains
The multi-billion pound Crossrail scheme will effectively destroy an important museum in east London, its chairman will tell MPs.

The Museum of Immigration and Diversity in Spitalfields is above the proposed route of the high-speed rail link.

Its chairman, Susie Symes, said the consequences could be devastating for the listed 18th Century property.

Transport for London (TfL) said the museum would not be affected, but would benefit from the rail link.

The rail link would stretch from Berkshire to Essex, through tunnels beneath London, but funding has yet to be secured.

The running of Crossrail through this part of east London does not take significant account of our cultural heritage.
Susie Symes

If the project goes ahead, it is unlikely to be completed before 2015 - mayor Ken Livingstone said it was vital for London's future prosperity.

The Crossrail Bill is still going through Parliament - and Ms Symes will be giving evidence to the Commons Select Committee on 15 June.

On Sunday, she said: "Crossrail engineers have only just visited the site and they clearly had no idea before of the physical fragility of the property.

"The running of Crossrail through this part of east London does not take significant account of our cultural heritage.

Crossrail benefits

"This museum is a quite extraordinary project and it is vital we educate people about their cultural diversity."

The building, 19 Princelet Street, is already on the Buildings At Risk Register and needs major work to prevent the walls and ceilings from collapsing.

But Transport for London said it would not be affected, but would benefit from the increased numbers of people carried into Whitechapel station by Crossrail and the East London Line.

"The museum will not be affected by the work nor damaged by the tunnelling which will be more than 100ft below ground," a spokesman said.





SEE ALSO:
On track for Olympic bid?
19 Jul 04 |  London
Blair gives Crossrail backing
29 Oct 03 |  London
Crossrail given green light
14 Jul 03 |  London


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific