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Conservationists in new attempt to stop Neville and Giggs’ Manchester towers

Conservationists have applied for heritage protection for a religious building in Manchester city centre earmarked for demolition under plans by football stars-turned-developers Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs.

The Twentieth Century Society has submitted an urgent application to Historic England to list the 1950s-built Manchester Reform Synagogue in Jackson’s Row, close to Manchester’s celebrated Town Hall.

It is one of three buildings of historical interest that would be torn down to make way for the St Michael’s scheme, drawn up Ken Shuttleworth’s practice Make.

The current plans feature a 31-storey tower and a 21-storey block containing hotel, apartment and office facilities and a major new public space. The proposals also include a new home for the synagogue.

However, Twentieth Century Society adviser Tess Pinto said the ‘shocking’ plans showed ‘no consideration to Manchester’s special sense of place’

As well as the demolition of the synagogue, the proposed scheme on Jackson’s Row would see the demolition of the 1930s Bootle Street Police Station and a Victorian pub.

The site would border a conservation area containing the listed Public Library, Town Hall and Town Hall Extension buildings.

‘The plans will not only sweep away two fine 20th Century buildings, but will have a devastating impact on the neighbouring conservation area,’ said Pinto.

The synagogue, designed by architects and worshippers Levy and Cummings, was the first post-war building constructed in Manchester after the Second World War.

A full application is expected to be submitted imminently.