14 August 2019 - Latest - Royal London has refused to withdraw its application and is continuing discussions behind closed doors with Westminster City Council as to how they can get their scheme through despite the large local and national opposition to it. One of our ward councillors, Pancho Lewis, has supported our campaign but the other two, Jonathan Glanz and Tim Barnes are firmly in the developer’s camp and continue to support the demolition of the building - despite it being in the Conservation Area and being a building of merit on the Council’s own assessment. They argue that there is no economic use for the building in its current form. This seems unlikely. We think demolition puts short term private profit over the longer term interests of maintaining Soho’s history and heritage.
Royal London have also refused our offer of help to find a new tenant for the building in its current form.
Meanwhile, 1,424 people have signed our Chage.org petition. You can also hear Paul Velluet talking about the issue on BBC World Service programme Newsroom here.
Here is a small sample of the people who we know have been associated with the building:-
The Society is aware of proposals to demolish the South West corner of Soho Square, 20th Century House and a large chunk of Frith Street, the creation of a new pedestrian retail area and a new corner entrance to Soho Square.
You can look at the proposals in detail on the Council’s planning website. We asked for full elevations comparing the proposed with the existing and this is what we have been sent.
You can comment to the Council. We at the Soho Society would like to hear your views as well.
The Society wrote to the freeholder, Royal London, on 13 June, to suggest a reprieve during which we work to find a use for the existing building. At our 24 June meeting the freeholder agreed to look at a possible refurbishment of the building instead of demolition. So it’s more important than ever that we help find them a tenant for this building. For a new tech company to inherit 80 years of film history in one go seems like a bargain to us.
Demolition of 31- 32 Soho Square and 65-66 Frith Street and redevelopment to provide a building comprising of two basement levels, ground and seven upper levels of accommodation, alterations and works to 22-25 Dean Street including the erection of a rear extension at 1st and 2nd floors, alterations and works to 10 Chapone Place including the erection of an extension at 3rd floor level. Proposals include the enlargement and improvement to Chapone Place to provide a new public realm and route through the site linking Soho Square and Dean Street. Proposals will provide new, reconfigured and additional B1 (office) accommodation, flexible A1/A3 (retail/restaurant) units, A1 (retail) units, enlarged A3 (restaurant) unit and a flexible D1/D2 (non- residential institutions/assembly and leisure) unit.
Century House 31 - 32 Soho Square London W1D 3AP
Ref. No: 19/04164/FULL | Received: Wed 29 May 2019 | Validated: Wed 29 May 2019 | Status: Pending