Planning Triumph. Planning Opportunity. And an invitation ….

No – Not another Betting Shop! You may know that the hairdressers shop Kutt Zone at 317 Kentish Town Road. ‘Closed for refurbishment’  – or not as it happens…

Bet Fred applied to open a betting shop there.   Well done Camden for refusing permission.  Bet Fred appealed and for once the Planning Inspectors supported local planning decisions.

Congratulations and thanks to all who objected – and especially to Caroline Hill who led the campaign from KTRA – Kentish Town Road Action – which has fought for decades to preserve and improve the High Street and of which IARA has long been a part.  The judgment supports the local plans and gives us exactly the language to object to other changes that threaten the High Street.

The judgment is attached and the key element is:

Camden’s Core Strategy (2010) (CS) indicates that Kentish Town has a good range of shops and services with many independent traders and a significant amount of food and drink uses. The Council’s policies are to support the character and retail role of Kentish Town by managing the proportions of non retail premises.

Camden Development Policies seek to help and promote small and independent shops by encouraging the provision of small shop premises suitable for small and independent businesses.

It seems to me that whilst the existing premises at No. 317 is currently vacant it nevertheless provides a suitable unit and fulfils a role as a small shop in the context of the above policy. Furthermore, the appellant has not provided evidence of any marketing of the premises and therefore it has not been demonstrated that the existing unit is no longer required to fulfil this role. In my view the existing unit provides a valuable small shop which contributes to the variety and character of the town centre. This role is further enhanced by the high percentage of the non-retail uses which currently exist.

I find therefore that the loss of the A1 unit would have a harmful impact on the character and retail function of the Kentish Town Town Centre.

[Although the biggest threat to the High Street of course is us……  and Amazon etc.

“Every time we buy online another shop closes”  ….  Perhaps that’s an exaggeration …. but Amazon and co can always undercut shops – easily – because they don’t pay proper taxes which we need for schools and hospitals and roads etc .

If you love the High Street Shops – Use them or Lose them! ]

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Local Listing Also on the subject of preserving the qualities of Kentish Town:  Local Listing – a new idea which is explained below:   It is like getting a building declared a Listed Building but not by English Heritage – who have very high requirements – but based on local opinion.


It is explained by the bizarrely titled: Placeshaping Service Planning and Regeneration Planning, Culture and Environment Directorate thus:

What is Camden’s Local List?

Camden’s Local List identifies historic buildings and features that are valued by the local community and that help give Camden its distinctive identity. These features make a place special for local people – they carry history, traditions, stories and memories into the present day and add depth of meaning to a modern place.

Our List recognises elements of the historic environment that are not already designated in another way (for example a listed building), but which may nonetheless contribute to a sense of place, local distinctiveness and civic pride.  These buildings and features are known as ‘non-designated heritage assets’, and includes buildings such as houses, pubs and factories, gardens and open spaces, and features, such as parish boundary markers which all have heritage value

We are writing to let you know that we are now consulting on the Draft Local List and supporting guidance.

More information on the background to the Local List is available here.

How can I get involved?

As part of this consultation we are seeking views on:

·         ·         the significance of building/features identified on the draft Local List – maybe you have further information on some of the buildings/features identified? e.g. the name of architect / notable owners, date of construction, photographs or other architectural or historic information.

·         ·         new buildings / features you think should be included on Camden’s Local List – maybe you have been through the Local List and know of another building/feature that you think should be on it? Remember you should try to provide justification for this where possible – why the building is locally significant, a description of the building and any notable events / people / history attached to it, and location details

·         ·         the proposed supporting Camden Planning Guidance on non-designated heritage assets (including those identified on the draft Local List) – which sets out what non-designated heritage assets are, how they can be identified and assessed, and what it means to be a non-designated heritage asset.


The easiest way to give us your views is via an online form on our web pages at: (You can also view the draft Local List and Camden Planning Guidance on these web pages).

If you prefer you can also email your comments to the Local List team:

or write to us at: Conservation & Heritage (Local List)

Placeshaping ServicePlanning and Regeneration
Culture and Environment directorate
London Borough of Camden
Town Hall extension, Argyle Street

London WC1H 8EQ

The consultation period closes on 20th December 2013.

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If you are interested in conservation etc you may like to look at the excellent Conservation Area Statement which is mentioned on our website. It gives very informed comments on all streets and houses.


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Update on plans for 187 Kentish Town Rd (ex-Pizza Express)

Paul Seviour recently attended the latest consultation meeting with the architects for this site.  The Chair of the Residents Association for 1 Prince of Wales Road (the most closely affected residents) has sent us a report – we have not included it as it is quite long but it is attached.

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