Londoners celebrated a temporary reprieve from demolition for a much loved corner of London with a jolly promenade in Victorian costume. ECAAG invited residents to join "HM Queen Victoria" and the "Prince of Wales" as they visited Empress Place and its much-loved Edwardian pub named in his honour to denounce their impending demolition by Capco.
Linda Wade, Chair of ECAAG attended as did Andrew Slaughter MP for Hammersmith.
"We are losing so much of our built heritage and sense of place in London that appreciating what we still have takes on an added significance", said Linda Wade, Chair of ECAAG.
Residents joined in street theatre and sang music halls songs from the period, some especially adapted for the housing crisis: "Maybe it's because I'm a Londoner, that I live with my mum!"
To raucous cheers from participants and spectators, Capco staff pulled down their marketing suite’s blinds when residents in Victorian fancy dress sang the national anthem outside their Lillie Square showroom opposite Empress Place,
The demolition of Empress Place and two adjacent parades of shops on the Lillie Road by Capco entity Earl's Court Partnership Ltd was due to start on the 11th January, 2016.
Empress Place comprises two rows of attractive Victorian workers’ cottages in Hammersmith and Fulham. On the corner is the Edwardian Prince of Wales public house and a few doors up on the Lillie Road is The Imperial Arms.
Thanks to outraged Hammersmith and Fulham residents’ application to list the Prince of Wales pub as an Asset of Community Value, demolition of this area has had to be temporarily stayed at a time when the UK is losing 29 pubs every week to developers of expensive flats and to the big supermarkets’ local outlets, designed to drive out independent traders.