View Full Version : Northern Beer Blog - Pubpaper 804 – The case of the Carlton Tavern, London.

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14-04-2015, 17:51
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Imagine this. *Your pub has been around for close to 100 years and is considered a classic example of the pub architecture of the time, complete with tiled exterior and signage. *Inside the historical layout, fixtures and fittings have been maintained from when it was built unlike most pubs of its era. *Your pub is also being considered for grade 2 listed status and the following day may well see this status granted.
http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/1421069_Carlton-Tavern-3-300x209.jpg (http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/1421069_Carlton-Tavern-3.jpg)The problem is a property developer based in Israel owns the building and land and wants rid of the building, only interested in the land it sit on. *You know this as only 3 months ago the land owner applied for permission to demolish your pub and build a block of flats with a ground floor bar. *Only 20 minutes by tube to Central London from two local tube stations a mere 7 minute walk away, the 10 flats could each be worth several hundreds of thousands of pounds. *This planning permission was denied due to the development not including the provision of funding for affordable housing units (all big developments in London have to pay into an affordable housing fund).
http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/1421068_Carlton-Tavern-300x209.jpg (http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/1421068_Carlton-Tavern.jpg)The owner of the pub asks you to shut the pub for an “inventory”, however a few hours after you leave the pub you get an urgent phone call saying the bulldozers had moved in and the pub was being ripped apart, fixtures, fittings and all. **By the time you return and a planning enforcement team from the council turn up, the majority of the building is in ruins with one of the four walls partially intact. *You can still see the sports trophies on shelves and the flat screen TV mounted on an interior wall. *An empty glass still sits on the table in the now exposed bar.
http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/sparkling-ales_3261461b-300x187.jpg (http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/sparkling-ales_3261461b.jpg)This is what happened to the Carlton Tavern in North West London. *The timing was no coincidence, one day before grade 2 protected listing could have been granted, leaving the land owner next to no chance of building the valuable flats. *The pub was in good condition with trading more than viable, there was no commercial reason to shut the pub on its own merits. *Pure greed drove this action. **At least most land owners and pub companies have the courtesy to run the pub into the ground before forcing the tenant to leave and then closing the business. *The company who did this, CLTX, makes Enterprise Inns look like the model of good business ethics.
There is now a good chance that the site will stand empty for a time whilst Israeli owner tries to get planning permission for a second time from a seriously miffed off local planning authority in Westminster who are considering legal action regarding the unauthorised demolition. *The local community has lost a good pub, the landlady and staff have lost their jobs and no good has come of the whole sorry affair.
It is a shocking story and I can only hope they don’t get a £100,000 slap on the wrist and then get permission to build the said block of apartments a month later. *I hate to be a cynic, but I suspect this is what exactly will happen. *But is it any worse than losing a pub to one of the big supermarket local chains. *When property is leased to Tesco or Sainsburys it is on a long term lease of at least 10 years and often up to 25 years. *Do you think it will be converted back to a pub when Tesco decide to close the store, no it will become another retail unit or the site will be converted to housing in one form or another. **Once the pub leaves the building it rarely returns, its patrons move on elsewhere, other places take its position in peoples drinking habits.
http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/luddendenfoot_coachandhorses-300x225.jpg (http://www.seanliquorish.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/luddendenfoot_coachandhorses.jpg)There are some premises which are too big for the demand in the area they reside in, that I do admit and they will never be commercially viable again. *Locally in Calderdale at Luddenden Foot, the area now has a relatively healthy pub stock for its size with the ever present Old Brandy Wine and the Weavers serving the local population. *However a stones throw away from Weavers on the main road is the Old Coach*and Horses, which has been a number of restaurants since shutting as a pub.
The place is big as I remember from eating there once, you’d need a lot*of the village to fill the place. *The pub has been boarded up for at least 5 years now and is becoming an eyesore along with its cavernous car park. *I’d not object to the site being reused for another purpose, but the difference here is that its life as a pub is over, the Carlton Tavern’s was not.

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