Christmas wish for Carlton Tavern pub campaigners in Kilburn
PUBLISHED: 13:10 14 December 2015 | UPDATED: 16:13 14 December 2015
Campaigners in Kilburn have made it clear that all they want for Christmas is to have their beloved pub rebuilt.
A protest was held outside the Carlton Tavern in Carlton Vale, which was demolished by its private owners CLTX in April.
More than 20 people including Karen Buck, MP for Westminster North, and cross-party councillors gathered to show their determination the pub will be rebuilt while sharing a seasonal drink.
Friends of Rebuild the Carlton Tavern (FoRCT) recently discovered that the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) will not prosecute the privately owned company for setting bulldozers on the prewar pub without warning.
Cllr Tom Crockett, conservative councillor for Maida Vale, and Labour’s Cllr Rita Begum gathered video evidence of “dangerous and flagrant breaches of health and safety law” from local residents and presented it to the board.
Cllr Crockett said: “The HSE has confirmed that they will not reopen their investigation into those responsible for the demolition of the pub given as after careful consideration, the evidence is insufficient to justify action further than that already taken.
“However, I would want to thank the HSE for taking the time to allow me to assure people that we really have left no stone unturned in pursuing this issue.”
The pub, which dates back to 1920, was knocked down with all its contents inside after the owners’ bid to redevelop the site was rejected by Westminster Council.
The demolition took place shortly before it was due to be given a Grade II listing by Historic England.
In events that stunned the community, CLTX put in an appeal against their rejected planning application two weeks after reducing the Victorian pub to rubble and insisting it be heard in secret, by written representation.
The Israeli based company also appealed against the council’s enforcement notice in June that they must rebuild the pub “brick by brick”.
The case will be heard via a public enquiry in May 2016.
FOCT have been accepted as a Rule 6 Group for the public enquiry, which means they can testify during the proceedings.
Maureen Pepper, fundraiser for Rebuild the Carlton Tavern, said: “We are disappointed that the HSE (health and safety executive) has decided not to prosecute CLTX but they have surcharged them for the illegal demolition.
“We shared a seasonal drink outside the remains of the Carlton Tavern and vowed that we will share a drink inside our beloved pub again in the future.”
A HSE spokeswoman said: “HSE does not investigate or institute legal proceedings for every health and safety breach identified on a construction site.
“It was therefore judged that no further investigation or enforcement action was necessary following our initial response to the incident and this remains the case.”