Reflections in Flint as well-known properties torn down

Published date: 03 February 2014 |
Published by: Jamie Nield-Siddall 
Read more articles by Jamie Nield-Siddall  Email reporter


THEY may not look like much from the outside.

But to many the familiar Flint maisonettes are so much more than bricks and mortar.

Since demolition crews moved in to start ripping down more of the maisonettes last week – a community has reflected on the beginning of the “end of an era”.

Families and friends of different generations who have passed through the estate since the 1960s have enjoyed the good times and pulled together during the bad.

Those who grew up on the estate have described it as having its very own “little community” where people would help each other out.

Now, the site will make way for the multi-million pound project set to transform Flint – with the flats  to be pulled down block by block.

Former homes on Rosemary Walk were knocked down last week, with other empty flats on the ‘walks’ section facing demolition over the next six to eight weeks.

With bulldozers whirring around them, passionate residents have been sharing memories on a community Facebook page – with some even likening the maisonettes to a holiday camp.

Paula Dowell described visiting friends and family on the maisonettes as being like “going to Butlins”.

Wesley Owen, said: “I grew up there in the 80s and I moved from them at eight-years-old. I loved living there and have good memories.”

Mel Buckley posted: “It was a lot like Butlins. We were forever in and out of each others houses. I first lived in them in 1976 when I was just a toddler.

“I remember having a street party for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee and one for Prince Charles and Lady Diana’s wedding. Good times and good community spirit.”

Valerie Nevitt said: “My late mum and dad lived upstairs in Earl’s Lea. They loved it there.

“It was like a little community and they all helped each other.”

Despite residents’ sadness at the demolition of the former homes – the majority of the community is relishing the town’s transformation.

The once-booming community now has less than 30 homes occupied and has previously been at the centre of anti-social behaviour, with remaining residents describing their “hell” of gangs terrorising the estate.

Michelle Roberts said: “My brother is still there. He’s the last one in the block behind Iceland.

“They’ve not found him anywhere to live yet and they are knocking buildings down around him. Its so eerie now.”

Flintshire Council last week said all the maisonette blocks are planned to be removed in due course and. as each block is emptied, it will be demolished.

Community leaders have also said they are “happy” with the progress being made.

Flint councillor Alex Aldridge said all the maisonettes could be demolished by the summer.

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