Shock as historic pub in Kilburn is demolished with no warning and without permission
19:16 08 April 2015
A historic pub in Kilburn has been demolished today despite the council rejecting an application to bulldoze the building and replace it with flats.
Passersby stared in amazement as two bulldozers tore into Carlton Tavern in Carlton Vale, destroying its shell and all its contents including a wide screen television, darts trophies, pictures, and a pint glass left on a table.
No safety precautions had been put in place resulting in concerns about security of nearby buildings and if the utilities had been switched off prior.
Patsy Lord, the pub’s landlady, rushed to the scene from her home in Maida Vale after she was alerted to the demolition and told she needed to move her son’s car.
After opening for business on Monday and hosting an Easter quiz, she was told the pub would be closed for an ‘inventory.
Ms Lord said: “It’s heart breaking. There was no warning.
“I thought they were going to dig the back garden.”
Lorna Gethin, a customer who lives in Kilburn Park Road, said: “It was a hub for the community.
“I used to come here with my parents when I was little. Trophies have been won by the local darts team, all that has gone.”
Carlton Tavern was sold last year to CLTX before they put in a planning application to Westminster Council for the building to be demolished and replaced with a pub at ground level and 10 residential units over four floors.
The plans were rejected on the basis that the bulk, height and detailed design of the new development “would be detrimental to the view from the adjacent Maida Vale Conservation Area and view from the nearby recreation ground where it was a gateway to the park.
Gary White, from Elgin Avenue, Maida Vale, said: “Maybe they think by demolishing it they can get their planning permission through quicker.”
Maida Vale councillor Jan Prendergast added: “They do not have permission to do this. I am absolutely furious.
“The council will take very strong measures against them. It’s not safe and I’m appalled for the residents who live here.”
A council spokeswoman confirmed to the Times the demolition had taken place without permission and enforcement officers had attended the scene once they were alerted.
She added: “The council will be seeking legal advice concerning whether any future action is legally possible.
“Pubs play an important role in our local community.”
A spokeswoman for Historic England, previously known as English Heritage, told the Times there were plans to recommend the pub be given a grade II listing pending approval from the Department for Culture Media and Sport.
She added: “The Carlton Tavern built in 1920-21 for Charrington & Co, probably by Frank J Potter, was an early inter-war improved public house, carefully detailed and built of good quality materials, showing the vision of a leading London brewery.
“It was laid out as an improved pub with a public bar, and originally off sales, a saloon, and unusually a luncheon and tea room. The site was remarkably well-preserved externally and internally, it displayed the hierarchy of rooms in their fixtures, fittings and decorative treatment and retained all its external signage.
“Few pubs were built at this date and fewer survive unaltered. It also had great historical interest as an improved pub, illustrative of growing concern at raising the reputation of public houses, by providing family facilities and reducing drunkenness.”
The Times has contacted the company believed to be the agent of CLTX and are still awaiting a response.