Wednesday, 19 October 2011
Save Portobello-Stop All Saints
The many thousands who follow The Dame will recall that 2 years ago fashion store All Saints built a spectacular 'Victorianesque' plastic & glass shopfront on the prominent corner of Westbourne Grove & Portobello Road - a site formerly home to 300 antique dealers in Lipka antiques arcade. Planning permission played no part in the project. Following a public outcry, RBKC Planning Committee unanimously rejected a retrospective application for the new shopfront - on officers' recommendation.
The original approved plan was for genteel painted wood - 6 identical; symmetrical Victorian style shopfronts; each with a pair of glazed doors between 2 windows, with high upstands on Westbourne Grove. The Portobello flanking wall had to be largely painted stucco with a modest glazed door. The plans were appropriate for a conservation area; but have been airbrushed from history.
The new proposal is to strip away the notorious plastic cladding; attach a few bits of wood; paint alleged hardwood & install even more glass to the Portobello flanking wall. The shop windows will retain plastic 'lead' lights; despite the fact the 'lead' falls off the glass! Remarkably, officers now recommend the Committee to approve this architectural travesty.
At little over a week's notice, the Committee will reconsider the All Saints planning application @ Kensington Town Hall on Tuesday 25th October @ 6 for 6.30pm; it's the first item on the agenda.
All those concerned for the authenticity of Victorian Kensington please join family & friends to support the "Save the Portobello Road Market" campaign & the built environment.