The case of the disappearing pub

The landlady of the Carlton Tavern in Maida Vale, London knew that her pub was due to close, as the owners had applied to Westminster City Council for permission to redevelop it.

She was told that an inventory was to be taken over the Easter week and not to come in to work. However, when she came back the next week, all she found was a huge pile of rubble.

The building had been demolished, despite the planning permission having been denied, and despite Historic England’s application to have the building designated as of historic value.

The Carlton Tavern was built in 1921, and was the only building in the area to have survived the Blitz in WW2. Commissioned by Carrington & Co, it was designed in the Vernacular Revival style, and was built on the site of a previous pub destroyed in WW1 in a Zeppelin raid.

Amid much uproar and protests from locals, Westminster Council have ordered the owners – CLTX Ltd of Tel Aviv – to “recreate in facsimile the building as it stood immediately prior to its demolition”. An enforcement order is being fast-tracked to prevent the property being sold before work is completed, which has a time-scale of 18 months.

The new listed status will also prevent it being knocked down – again.

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