Can it be true that London’s Jermyn Street is going the way of the dinosaur? It looks as though one of the most historic streets in St. James’s will soon be getting a facelift that will have Prince Charles, and the rest of us, up in arms. Filled with iconic shops and period buildings, the eastern end of Jermyn Street will soon be regenerated into the “St James’s Gateway,” complete with, as a press release puts it, “a striking new Eric Parry designed frontage along Piccadilly.”
Heloise Brown, conservation adviser for the Victorian Society, said: ‘That this corner of Piccadilly has a slightly run-down air is not in dispute, but demolition is not the answer. These buildings certainly need renovating and cleaning; they could even be extended as unusually for central London there is space behind them; there could be improvements in the street furniture, shop fronts and signage. All of this would make the properties more attractive to tenants without the needless destruction of eight historic buildings.’
Good for Heloise. You can read Michael Bywater’s pithy take on the subject here.