Hidden plans would lead to Archway post office demolition
24 November, 2017
• ISLINGTON and its neighbouring boroughs have been shedding post offices swiftly over the past few years.
That makes the few that remain key resources for those who live here. Unfortunately, we now discover that there are plans for the Archway post office to be demolished, though the proposal is hidden within a scheme for new lighting and planting in the open space outside the post office building.
There has been no application for demolition, still less approval, but the AOD (Approval of Details) application proposes a two-phase implementation of the scheme, in the second of which there is no post office. Misleadingly, the Photoshopped image of the proposals show the post office still present.
We hope that Islington Council will ask developers to withdraw the submission and submit a full planning application which includes their plans for the post office.
They have plenty of accessible ground-floor space underneath Hill House, which would be very suitable for the post office if the current site is redeveloped. However, to ensure the continued operation of the post office the new premises need to be ready to move into before the old premises are closed.
We would also expect that, before any resubmission, that the applicant would have clarified who would be maintaining the open space going forward. The current application admits that this has not been decided, which at least makes it clear that they have no intention of taking responsibility for it.
If they don’t want the land, perhaps they could hand it over to the community as genuine public realm, not the privatised variety.
Chair, Better Archway Forum