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Cheers all round as work begins to rebuild Carlton Tavern pub

The pub in Carlton Vale was knocked down by developers without permission in 2015

11 August, 2017 — By Alina Polianskaya

Cllr Thomas Crockett by the rubble of the Carlton Tavern 

CAMPAIGNERS are celebrating after a developer that knocked down a pub without permission began rebuilding it. Workmen are salvaging surviving materials among the rubble of the Carlton Tavern, Maida Vale.

Lettered tiles from the pub sign lay in a little pile by the entrance to the building site. Developer CLTX was ordered to rebuild the pub it suddenly demolished in April 2015 after losing a legal battle with Westminster Council last year.

Campaigner Polly Amos Roberston said: “People have been saying it’s going on for too long, it’s not going to happen, so it’s great to see that it’s starting. We are looking forward to having our hub back, somewhere we can get together and have a drink.”

Ms Robertson, who lives in Dibdin House, said she was confident the developers would now follow through with the works. “I will give all my time to make sure it is rebuilt. It’s broken a community, breaking that building.”

She added: “I think it has sent not just a message but a warning to developers, it’s a message that enough is enough, You can’t just destroy the face of England to make a profit.”

Campaigners Rob Cope, Maureen Pepper, Cllr Crockett and Cllr Rita Begum with her husband Jubair Ahmed and son Shakib

John Simmance, a plumber from Maida Vale, said it was “great” to see work begin on the pub as it is something they had been pursuing for a long time. “This seems like a serious step to get things moving and we are pleased it is taking place,” he said. “They should have never knocked it down in the first place. They haven’t got any choice now [except to rebuild it.]”

He said the developers had known that the pub was being considered for listing at the time, but “took the decision to knock it down illegally”.

“We think it should be a lesson that you can’t just come and destroy a beautiful building, smash it down for profit,” he added. “This should be a warning to all property developers.”

Mr Simmance, who grew up in Maida Vale, said Paddington Rec was “at the heart” of the area and “the pub was always a major feature of that”.

Maida Vale councillor Thomas Crockett, who stood behind residents in their fight for justice, said: “It almost goes without saying that I’m absolutely delighted that work is starting to rebuild this much-loved pub.”

Maida Vale Cllr Rita Begum added: “I can’t be more pleased with this victory and looking forward for the work to begin and before going forward I will make sure all plans are looked at by campaigners and supporters making sure it gets built brick by brick.”

Salvaged tiles from the pub’s sign in a pile on the Carlton Tavern site

Campaigner Rob Cope said: “It is the last pre-war building that survived the Blitz round here, it is the only pub for a mile around, it is a central community building not just for the estate but for Paddington Rec just behind.”

Campaigner Maureen Pepper said she was keen to see a plan. “People stop me in the street all the time and ask me what’s happening, when is it going to be rebuilt, when is it going to open, and I don’t know what to say.”

Cllr Crockett was among those to witness the works inside, and recalled seeing “radiators hanging off the walls”.

He added: “What was particularly poignant was the big O from Charrington’s Sparkling Ales that was on the front. You can see that they seem to be doing it by the book, before going forward, which is good to see.”

CLTX could not be reached for comment.

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