'Ripping The Heart Out Of Ealing'

Plans for the Broadway could see end to Conservation area


Don't Rip Heart Out Of Ealing Petition

Town Centre Redevelopment Changes

First Chance to See New Ealing Centre Plans

9-42 The Broadway

Benson Elliot Buy Arcadia Site

Council Steps in Over Arcadia

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Campaigners say if major redevelopment plans for Ealing Town Centre get the green light it will mean the end of an historic conservation area, and create an 'open season' for further demolition.

9-42 The Broadway artist impression

9-42 The Broadway (formerly the Arcadia site) is to be totally overhauled with ambitious proposals for flats (including an 18-storey block), shops, a music venue and a 'boutique' cinema.

haven Place - artist impression

The majority owners, Benson Elliot, working alongside Londonewcastle submitted their original plans in October 2015, but made slight alterations following public consulation.

However, Historic England (HE), the Government’s advisors on the nation’s heritage, remain unhappy with the plans and say the loss of so many buildings which contribute to the special 'historic and architectural character' of the town centre would justify de-designation of the conservation area.

David English, Historic Places Advisor from HE has written to Ealing Council:

'' If this scheme is approved and built, the Council should undertake a review of the conservation area including a full public consultation. We are likely to advise that the Ealing Town Centre conservation area will no longer merit its status.''

Local groups including Ealing Civic Society, Save Ealing’s Centre (SEC), and local conservation panels are now urging the Council listen to Historic England and work to secure further improvements from the developers or else refuse the application. 

Will French, from SEC, says if these plans are approved in the present form the area stands to lose its conservation status, which could also set a precedent for the rest of the borough.

He says: '' Heritage assets are irreplaceable and any harm or loss requires clear and convincing justification. Nothing the developers have said to promote their scheme justifies the loss of the remaining heart of one of London’s earliest suburban town centres.

Musicians are backing the redevelopment proposals as they include a new music venue to replace the historic Ealing Club, but Mr French adds:

'' Most of us back inclusion of a new club to replace the Red Room. It is high time we started celebrating Ealing's rich heritage that the Ealing Club was part of rather than our obsession with demolishing it.
''However, historic England are quite clear in their letter when they say:  'it would be possible to achieve many of the development aims without the requirement for such wide-scale demolition.'' 

Campaigners have set up a petition and are urging residents to protest about the plans.

A spokesperson from Benson Elliot and Londonewcastle said :

“We absolutely support the strong local desire to see the Conservation Area (CA) remain, of which our site is only a small part. It contains no listed buildings and we are preserving key facades that make a positive contribution to the CA, while replacing those identified as making a negative or neutral contribution.

''LB Ealing has identified four buildings on the site that make a positive contribution to the CA - only one of which we are unable to retain as we are pulling back our site boundary line to increase the pavement by up to 2.7m at the busy Carphone Warehouse corner. We believe this is an important public benefit. Of the remaining three - one is being kept in its entirety and the frontages of two more are being fully preserved.

''We are of course disappointed with the Historic England response, but we believe our proposals will bring welcome vitality to this part of the town centre, balancing major investment while preserving its valued character.''

An Ealing Council spokesperson said: "We have no plans to review the conservation area and this will not be affected by any decision made at the planning hearing on 24 February."

See the plans in full here. The application goes before the planning committee on 24th February.

Campaigners are urging that objections to the scheme be sent to Steve Austin at planning@ealing.gov.uk (cc austins@ealing.gov.uk )  as well as local councillors.

Planning Ref  P/2015/3479


(updated) 16th February 2016


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