The Council requires the façade of the Alchemist pub to be rebuilt

Author: Cyril Richert

The Council has refused a retrospective planning consent to demolish the façade of the former Fishmonger/Alchemist pub (planning application  2015/2762) on Tuesday 21st July. The Alchemist pub, located at 225 St John’s Hill, was nearly totally demolished last month, without planning consent (see our story HERE).

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According to the Council’s press release:

The council responded to this unlawful demolition by launching enforcement action requiring the developer to rebuild it brick-by-brick.

A subsequent attempt to circumvent the enforcement action by obtaining retrospective permission has today (Tuesday) been rejected.

Planners ruled that the developer’s application should be refused because the loss of this important local landmark and prominent historic building in the conservation area would be against the public interest.

The developer will now be required to start work on rebuilding the pub and restoring it to its original condition. 

Alchemist pub as it was before demolition

In the press release, Planning chairman Cllr Sarah McDermott said:

“In our view the demolition was a very serious breach of planning rules which can only be put right by the complete rebuilding and reconstruction of this important community asset, using the same materials and to the same architectural design.”

In an additional email exchange today 22nd July, she added:

“The enforcement notice is finalised and will be hand delivered this week. The notice requires the property to be re-built in facsimile.

As a consequence, it is likely that the developer will have to submit a new application in due course for the rest of the building, which means that former planning consent could be re-discussed and amended.

The events have attracted considerable media attention as, following the Evening Standard, the BBC run a story on July 14th, Cllr Cook was meant to be appearing on local BBC news about the demolition and the protection of pubs this evening – subject to BBC’s other pressing stories and ITV London contacted the Wandsworth Society for comments.

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