Planners Accept Duke of York Has to Go

Say applicant has made case for conversion of Devonshire Road Pub

One of the bus stops were the digital ad display (right) would be placed

January 17, 2023

A report by Hounslow Council planners is recommending that approval be given to the conversion of the Duke of York pub into flats.

An application (P/2022/3742) was submitted at the end of last year to build two self-contained units at the site on the corner of Devonshire Road and Fraser Street.

Only one objection was made to the plan, on the grounds of the loss of a community asset. The planners concluded that the loss had been justified by the applicant and the design of the new housing would cause no harm to appearance of the area or to neighbouring properties.

A marketing report was submitted with the application which said that an attempt had been made to find a new tenant for the pub for nearly four years. The previous tenant was evicted in 2018 and, after that time, squatters moved in leaving the condition of the building in a ‘horrendous’ state by the time they left in April 2020 according to the report.

Willmotts was instructed to let the property in June 2018 and it is stated that the premises were offered at a mid-market rent with any offers being considered. Despite this there was apparently no interest in taking over the pub which is attributed to its location and then the difficult market conditions caused by Covid-19 and the war in Ukraine. No serious enquiries about the pub were received after March 2020.

The Duke of York was designed by architect Nowell Parr (1846-1933) who is known for pub architecture and designed many public houses for Fullers Brewery in the early twentieth century. He is believed to have been influenced by Norman Shaw who was involved in the development of Bedford Park around the same time including the design of the Tabard Pub which he built in 1880. Nowell Parr used architectural terracotta such as from Royal Doulton which can be seen on the ground floor external walls of the Duke of York justifying a local listing.

The proposal involves forming new openings to rear and flank walls to the existing building fabric together with an attic-level balcony. In addition, it is planned to upgrade the street-facing facade to bring them back to what the architect believes was its original condition.

The plans have been submitted by Tsuruta Architects which was established by Taro Tsuruta, a Japanese architect who has worked with previously worked with other design practices including Portcullis House in Westminster before setting up his own studio.

The report by the planners may still need to be accepted by councillors on the borough planning committee before final approval is granted.

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