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Mayor of London should ‘call in’ Foyles demolition

The Victorian Society has asked the Mayor of London to 'call in' the decision to demolish the former Foyles building on London's Charing Cross Road.

Copyright: Google Maps 2016

In February, the Victorian Society objected to the substantial demolition and redevelopment of the former Foyles bookshop site on Charing Cross Road. Nevertheless, Westminster City Council granted consent subject to the view of the Mayor of London. Last week the Society wrote to the new mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to add it's voice to Historic England's request for the Mayor to call in the decision and decide it himself. SAVE has also requested the decision to be called in by the mayor.

The proposed development site comprises an interesting collection of buildings dating from the 17th century to the later 20th. Most prominent are those buildings on Charing Cross Road itself. All three buildings are identified as Unlisted Buildings of Merit in the Soho and Chinatown Conservation Area Audit. The Audit asserts that “their demolition or unsympathetic alteration will normally be resisted”.

The Society considers that a substantial and unjustified degree of harm would be caused to the Soho Conservation Area by the loss of these buildings which positively contributing to the special character and appearance of the area, the erosion of the site’s distinctive grain and pattern of development and the detrimentally incongruous scale of the proposed new building. 

You can read the Society's original objection letter here.

Wednesday 8 June, 2016

More recent item: Society responds to latest plans for Brighton's Madeira Terrace
Earlier item: Secretary of State ‘calls-in’ damaging Ealing conservation area plans

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