Donegall Street History
Following the demolition of 207 - 215 Donegall Street in 1990 the remaining buildings deteriorated considerably as they had been empty for 20 years. They were listed after Roads Service decided they no longer needed them.
Prior to Hearth acquiring the properties the back wall of 201 collapsed due to decay in old lintels. This collapse pulled down the staircase and also put the other properties in danger of collapsing also.
In the course of urgent works, Hearth built a new back wall using modern brick but repeating the pattern of the existing walls. Bricks salvaged from the demolition of 207 - 215 were used to create a gable wall and to repair the front facade of the remaining buildings. The windows, doors, roof and fireplaces of the houses were also restored. Gas central heating was installed and insulation fitted to the roof space to improve warmth and energy efficiency.
The Donegall Street houses are now lived in by housing association tenants.
Properties left empty for long periods of time gradually decay and like Donegall Street may begin to fall down. A use should be found for such historic buildings in order to restore them and ensure their continued survival. Even a very decayed house can be reused!
Reclaiming bricks that have already been used is more sustainable than buying new ones. Reusing materials where ever possible is very sustainable. If timber is rotten sections can be cut away and replaced with new materials that match the existing.