Thu Nov 23, 2017 London
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EDITORIAL

Editorial comment from Matthew SteeplesOur editor tells it like it is and he rarely minces his words

Naff off

Central London is losing its character

 

A house in Pelham Street for £105 million, Tamara Ecclestone spends £1 million on a bathtub and Made in Chelsea’s Spencer Matthews racks up a bar bill of £450,000. These are all headlines we’ve featured recently that illustrate the nonsensical world that has become The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Mayfair and Belgravia.

 

Central London is certainly changing but it's not necessarily for the better
Central London is certainly changing but it’s not necessarily for the better

Yes, we’ll readily admit these areas have always been a home to the elite of England and that things have generally been more pricey but now it’s not about value, it’s about vulgarity. Just as the English toffs are priced out of Eaton Terrace by Russian oligarchs, the residents of Chelsea Green’s The Sutton Trust Estate are campaigning to stop the estate’s owners relocating them to another location to make way for a Candy & Candy style development.

 

Choys on the Kings Road, which was open for 61 years, has closed and the General Trading Company is no more. Half of Beauchamp Place is empty and Harrods is closing its pets department. The new residents – if one can even call them that given they spend most of the year elsewhere – don’t want anything other than cigar terraces where a gin and tonic will set you back £40 because of the £25 “seating charge” and restaurants that charge £35 for a simple stir fry.

 

The very things that make Central London attractive are its fine architecture, history and character. We must not let the new wealth destroy them.

 

 

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Comments

1 comment on “Naff off”

  1. I couldn’t agree more Matthew.

    The sad decline for me started in Westminster with the decimation of Leicester Square. The swiss clock being replaced by 4 floors of M&M World, which has to be the most ridiculous cathedral ever erected to consumerism. As my then 12 year old son pointed out, “they’re sweets and they only have 2 flavours, how can that take up four floors?”

    The rubbishing of the park, the removal of the boards explaining it’s historical significance from Faraday at the Alhambra to the stupendous Wyld’s Globe, the statues of its famous residents (Reynolds, Hogarth, Newton & Hunter) and the hand-prints of our great film stars.

    The devastation of Leicester Square complete a campaign was even required to save Burlington Arcade for goodness sake.
    https://www.facebook.com/saveburlingtonarcade/posts/399993126695539

    These atrocities have all been perpetrated by the vandals that are Westminster Council. One hopes that good sense, style and decency return to London very soon.

    However, whilst our lives are dictated by the most ill educated and petty minded bureaucrats that run our councils, one can see London turning into a version of Dubai airport, replete with tacky flying saucers with blinking lights hanging over Trafalgar Square.

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